ECONOMY

In Brief

Reding: Regulators should be able to split telecoms EU Telecoms Commissioner Viviane Reding said late on Thursday in Athens she was confident the European Commission will back a controversial proposal to split telecoms giants that use their infrastructure advantage to stifle competition. Reding is promoting plans to allow national regulators in EU countries to break up the network and services parts of telecoms companies when markets are not considered open. The plan, which has been publicly criticized by other commissioners, could be part of new EU telecoms rules due to be announced by the bloc’s executive on November 13. «I am very confident that on November 13 the Commission will decide (to propose) functional separation as a remedy to be utilized by the independent regulators,» Reding said. She said separation had been successful in Britain and that other regulatory authorities, including those in Italy, Ireland and Sweden, were considering similar action. (AP) Garganas warns of inflation risks in the eurozone FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Inflation risks in the eurozone may be on the rise, European Central Bank Governing Council member Nicholas Garganas said in an interview released yesterday. Garganas told news agency Dow Jones that the volatility on financial markets had so far had only a modest impact on the cost of financing and brought no major hit to confidence. «I would think it is more likely than not that inflation in 2008 will be above 2 percent,» he was quoted as saying. «My view is that the risks to inflation are, perhaps, increasing.» The ECB last week left interest rates unchanged at 4 percent for the fourth month running and pointed to downside risks to growth due mainly to financial market volatility. Rhodes marina Emporiki Bank announced yesterday it is undertaking the funding of the Rhodes marina, bringing the project one step closer to implementation. Following the approval by the Tourism Development and Economy ministries, the bank will fund the project with 55.95 million euros, from an estimated total of 62.5 million euros budgeted for the marina. Property prices The Greek housing market fell from eighth to 26th position among 30 countries worldwide based on price increase rates in the year’s second quarter, said the Knight Frank international estate services firm. Cyprus package for poor The Cyprus parliament unanimously approved a wide-ranging 121-million-pound (212.3-million-euro) benefits and tax relief package aimed at improving living standards and closing the gap between rich and poor. The package, including higher tax breaks and cheaper heating fuel, was unanimously passed by parliament. (AFP)