OPINION

Privatizing OSE and scrapping the Dublin II treaty

There is cash to be found for the state

It seems that because the Greek state is in such a tight fiscal situation, it should be doing everything possible to raise cash to lower its debts.

A quick look at the Athens Stock Exchange, and more specifically the companies listed on the FTSE/ATHEX 20, reveals several companies from which the Greek state should divest in order to raise cash.

Companies like OTE telecom, Public Power Corporation and state betting agency OPAP are profitable companies whose stock is partially owned by the Greek state and surely would function just as well if they were completely privatized. ATEBank stock sales by the Greek state would raise cash and divest itself from a loss generator.

Perhaps it is time to privatize the OSE railways organization and see if private investors can cure it of its near-billion-euro losses. Sales of profitable companies would raise needed cash while divesting from loss-making enterprises would eliminate the drain on public finances.

Maybe such moves would also help Greece?s standing in the bond markets and with its rescuers, the EU and the IMF, by showing that they are doing as much as possible to straighten out their finances, streamline the state apparatus, and make the real economy more efficient and productive.

PETER KATES

Illinois, USA

Get tough on migration

Alexis Papachelas?s article ?Fence defense? (10/1/11) was excellent and to the point. Greece?s national security and national survival is at stake. The claim of asylum is a term all illegal immigrants use to buy time while heading down to Athens; most are economic migrants. The Dublin II treaty needs to be scrapped, which makes me wonder why Greece signed it in 2003 given that 90 percent of all illegal immigrants come via Turkey. The Greek state is to blame for the illegal immigrants being there in large numbers. It has taken 20 years for the penny to drop. Greece has a standing army of 100,000. Why hasn?t it been better utilized for border control? Greece must now begin the process of massive deportations and the bill should be sent directly to Brussels.

GEORGE SALAMOURAS

Melbourne, Australia