ECONOMY

In Brief

Fuel prices put main pressure on CPI in October Greece’s consumer price index in October rose 3.8 percent on the year compared with an annual rise of 3.9 percent in September, the National Statistics Service said yesterday. Higher fuel prices continued to pressure the index, the NSS said. Heating oil prices were 30.2 percent higher on the year in October and rose 10.4 percent on the month. Gas prices were 9.8 percent higher on the year. Fresh vegetable prices also pressured the index. Potatoes were 22.9 percent higher on the year. Fresh fruit prices, however, fell 6 percent on the year. The harmonized consumer price index in October rose 3.7 percent on the year compared with a 3.8 percent rise in September. Harmonized data are used for comparison purposes within the European Union. (AP) Refiners give mixed picture of 9-month results Hellenic Petroleum, Greece’s largest refiner, posted a better-than-expected 103 percent leap in 9-month group net profit yesterday, helped by strong refining margins and rising oil prices. Net profit rose to 259 million euros. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) increased 56 percent to 520 million euros, with sales up 35 percent to 4.66 billion. The refiner said it would recommend an interim dividend of 15 cents per share to shareholders Earlier yesterday, Motor Oil, the country’s second-largest refiner, reported a 1.1 percent drop in nine-month net profit to 102.8 million euros, hurt by the one-month shutdown of its facility. (Reuters) Germanos Phone and accessory retailer Germanos is considering acquisitions in Poland and Romania next year as part of its expansion into eastern Europe, a company spokesman said yesterday. Poland and Romania are currently Germanos’s biggest markets after Greece, contributing 46 million and 39 million euros respectively to the group’s total sales of 429.6 million euros in the year’s first half. Germanos, which owns a network of 330 outlets in Poland, wants to increase this to about 550 and also double the number of shops in Romania by 2007 from 95 now. (Reuters) Unfit olive oil The Hellenic Food Safety Authority (EFET) said it has found the «Extra Virgin Olive Oil 365» brand, packed by Belgian company Delhaize and sold by supermarket chain AB Vassilopoulos to be largely adulterated with sunflower oil. The product in question is packed in one-liter bottles and carries an expiry date of August 2006 (Lot number: LE 5130). Sagem French cellphone maker Sagem is targeting a 5 percent market share in Greece by the end of the year, by launching new models (my300x series) and expanding its distribution network. New, third-generation models will be launched in the new year, of which the myW7 will feature a 1.3 megapixel camera. Cosmopolis The new Cosmopolis entertainment and shopping complex, located at the junction of Kifissias Avenue and Attiki Odos, includes 12 cinemas with a total capacity of 2,025 people, parking facilities for 480 cars and 1.2 acres for outdoor recreational activities. The operators said at a presentation yesterday they hope to attract 30,000-35,000 visitors weekly when all shops and catering facilities are open for business.