State aid withdrawn

The Consumer Institute (INKA), one of Greece’s oldest consumer organizations, will stop receiving state aid and risks being taken off the official registry of such organizations, the Ministry of Development announced yesterday. Deputy Development Minister Yiannis Papathanassiou and General Secretary for Consumers Athanassios Skordas accused INKA of willingly providing false information about the prices of school supplies and misleading consumers. According to the state officials, INKA falsely reported that the prices of some school supplies had increased over 100 percent this year. The fact that INKA provided different comparison prices from last year to those it had actually reported in 2005, was evidence of «an effort to mislead the public for the sake of creating false impressions,» according to Papathanassiou. Last year, the state provided 240,000 euros in aid to 50 consumer organizations. INKA had received 10,000 euros.