ECONOMY

In Brief

Tourism in Turkey continues its growth Turkish tourism is reaping major benefits as arrivals have risen by 12.37 percent annually over the first four months of the year and soared by 20.15 percent year-on-year in May, thanks to the global economic crisis as the euro has strengthened, hurting Turkey’s direct rivals, while Turkish services are cheaper and more competitive. Greek visitors posted a 36 percent rise against the same period in 2007, reaching 147,098 people and accounting for 3.18 percent of all arrivals. Greece is the ninth-biggest market for Turkish tourism, posting a steady rise in absolute figures in the last few years. Vienna bourse outbids Athens for Ljubljana VIENNA (AP) – The Vienna Stock Exchange is taking an 81 percent controlling stake in the Ljubljana Stock Exchange in neighboring Slovenia. Officials announcing the deal yesterday said the Vienna bourse outbid Greece’s Hellenic Exchanges to acquire the stake. Vienna exchange chief Heinrich Schaller said the deal represents Austria’s long-term commitment to investing in companies trading publicly in Slovenia, a eurozone member. Titan CFO Titan Cement Company, the biggest maker of building material in Greece, named Haralambos Mazarakis as its new chief financial officer. Mazarakis, once chief operating officer at Vodafone Group Plc’s Greek unit, will take up his post on September 12, according to an Athens bourse filing. Mazarakis was previously chief financial officer at Vodafone Greece. (Bloomberg) Bulgarian inflation Bulgaria’s central bank reiterated its end-2008 inflation forecast of 7.5-8 percent year-on-year, Governor Ivan Iskrov said yesterday. Consumer price inflation hit 15 percent on an annual basis in May but Iskrov said that was mainly due to base effects and the bank expects a slowdown on expectations of better grain crops that will help to avoid renewed food price hikes. «We expect inflation at about 7.5-8.0 percent at the end of the year,» Iskrov told reporters. (Reuters) Turk gold exports Gold jewelry exports from Turkey, one of the world’s largest exporters of the metal, dropped by 22 percent to 6.9 tons in May, figures from the exporters’ association showed yesterday. Exports in the first five months were down by 0.65 percent to 38.6 tons, the figures showed. (Reuters) Turkcell expansion Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri AS, Turkey’s biggest mobile-phone company, won an auction for extra bandwidth as it seeks to improve call quality. Turkcell paid 21.1 million liras ($17.2 million), excluding sales tax, for the five extra «A-type» frequencies, the company said in a filing with the Istanbul Stock Exchange. Turkcell said it currently owns 50 frequencies in Turkey. (Bloomberg)