ECONOMY

In Brief

Turkey agrees to secure farm and social security spending ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey has agreed in its talks with a visiting IMF team to take extra steps to cover 2 billion lira ($1.49 billion) in excess spending on social security and agriculture, officials told Reuters yesterday. The officials, who declined to be named, said the extra spending would be covered through reserve funds and budgetary funds that had already been allocated but not yet spent. «In the talks with the IMF delegation, we have established that the excess spending in agriculture and social security would be around 2 billion lira, and have decided to take measures,» one official said. The officials said the transfer of the funds to cover the excess spending would not harm budgetary targets. «For example, the budget deficit and the primary surplus targets are preserved,» an official said. The IMF approved the three-year loan accord in May, replacing a previous $19 billion accord that expired earlier in the year – the first time Turkey had successfully seen an IMF program through to completion. THY orders Airbus Turkish Airlines said it had decided to buy five Airbus A340 planes, which it is currently leasing, for a total of $175 million. The company said in a statement to the Istanbul Stock Exchange late on Monday that it will finance the purchases from its own resources. The lease periods of the five planes are scheduled to expire between April 2006 and April 2011. (Reuters) Siemens Hellas Siemens Hellas’s CEO Michalis Christoforakos has recently held talks with Prime Minister of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Vlado Buckovski and other senior officials, with a view to closer cooperation in implementing large infrastructure and other projects, the company said in a statement. DOL-Pegasus The board of listed media company Lambrakis Press (DOL) yesterday gave initial approval to a proposed 50 percent participation in a joint publishing venture with also listed firm Pegasus. Lambrakis Press will hold the management.