Steps for ASE transparency

National Economy Minister Nikos Christodoulakis yesterday announced a batch of measures intended to boost transparency in the dealings of the Athens stock market. Speaking in Parliament during the debate on a proposal by opposition New Democracy for a Parliamentary investigation into claims that the state portfolio management company (DEKA) was manipulated by the government to prop up the flagging bourse before the last elections, Christodoulakis unveiled five measures which, to a great extent, reflected proposals by Synaspismos Left Coalition leader Nikos Constantopoulos. According to the minister, the Athens Stock Exchange will be fully privatized to ensure its autonomy, a disciplinary board will be formed, all supervisory and monitoring authorities will be called to provide Parliament with regular briefings on their work, distinction will be made between disciplinary and criminal offenses regarding share transactions and a specialized judicial body will be created to rule on capital market affairs. But Christodoulakis did not accept proposals that the Capital Markets Commission become fully autonomous, or that directors, top functionaries and government officials should be banned from undertaking stock market transactions with their portfolios passed on to an independent mutual fund. Passaris told the officers that when he escaped in February he had been given a gun by an accomplice at the Athens court complex where the police van stopped to drop off some prisoners before taking him to the hospital for tests. I do not rat on my partners, I won’t tell you anything else, he added.

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