Perama shipbuilding/repair zone workers to demonstrate on Thursday

Workers in the shipbuilding and repair zone in Perama will hold a protest demonstration on Thursday evening at Korai Square in Piraeus.
The workers are protesting against planned privatisations of Greek ports and demanding that Greek shipyards pass into state control and, together with the zone itself, to operate under a 100 percent state agency.
Dockworkers will also hold a 24-hour strike on Thursday that has been called by the employees of the public utilities and organisations (DEKO) and public sector enterprises.

The dockworkers will hold a second 24-hour strike on Friday, in protest of further privatisation of the Piraeus Port Organisation (OLP) and other ports, with a demonstration planned at 11:00 a.m. outside the employment ministry.

Meanwhile, the Federation of Workers of Greece's Ports (OMYLE), in an open letter to the prime minister, the leaders of the political parties and the country's MPs, warned that prospective materialisation of the government's announced plans for privatisation of the ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki would be a "scandal with political and criminal dimensions".

OMYLE further said that it will escalate its mobilisations.

The federation, in the letter, noted that, under a special law, the state is required to always retain 51 percent of the share capital of the Piraeus and Thessaloniki Ports (OLP and OLTH, respectively), while care is also taken for the tenure of all the workers.

In the event of the sale of 75 percent of the share capital in OLP that the Greek state currently holds, the state would be selling out a state authority to a foreign investor, an unprecedented policy Europe-wide
.OMYLE said that the sale of the state's holdings in OLP would bring in approximately 270 million euros, whereas the annual profits of OLP is around 30 million euros, wile 390 million euros in investments that have been made in the period 2002-2010 were with the organisation's own funds.

Further, sale of the state's holdings in OLTH would generate 103.5 million euros, when OLTH's reserves currently stand at 75 million euros and its profits are on a constant rise, standing at approximately 20 million euros annually.

Business Briefs

-- A deep economic recession in the country directly hit corporate profits last year, an ICAP Group survey showed on Tuesday.
The analysis, based on the balance sheets published by 4,065 companies, of which 923 industrial, 1,111 commercial, 248 construction, 347 tourism and 1,433 services enterprises, confirmed that profitability of companies in the private sector was directly affected by an economic crisis.

-- Greek-listed enterprises with strong export activities reported improved results in the first quarter of 2011, despite a deep economic recession in the country.
Motor Oil topped the list of the first quarter’s best performers, with strong exports and sales to the shipping sector significantly boosting profits and sales. The company reported profits of 62.4 million euros in the January-March period, up from 12.5 million euros last year, while turnover rose 12.88 pct to 1.82 billion euros.

-- The government on Tuesday launched lowest-bid tenders to build marinas in the ports of Marathokampos and Volissos, on the eastern Aegean islands of Samos and Hios, respectively, as part of a strategy to improve marinas facilities and attract more sea tourism in the country.

-- The Hellenic Horse Racing Organisation, the operator of the sole horse racing track in Greece, on Tuesday reported lower revenues and losses for 2010.
Gross revenues fell to 194.35 million euros, down from 261.23 million euros in 2009, for a decline of 25.6 pct.

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