Our country unfortunately has been found in the throes of an extremely profound and multifaceted crisis due to the fact that a so-called “developmental model” was followed during previous decades. Therefore no progress can be linked to a return to the past and no rational policy, regardless of any ideological background, could aim at setbacks.
There is only one way to move forward –in accordance to the common political slogan of the two major parties, Syriza and Nea Dimokratia. By creating opportunities for the people, and not privileges for the few. And at the same time create the opportunities that will guarantee the reliability of the country abroad, strengthening our position in the EU and the ability to upgrade the geopolitical role of the country. Because these features provide increased national power to the country and this is to the benefit of the society and its citizens.
With this goal in mind, we should mobilize all our forces in a clear manner and our mineral wealth should be prioritized. Hence it is surprising that a country so rich in minerals is casually sitting on all this wealth, while it is cutting back on the pensions of the elderly and does not have any money for teachers in schools … No logical argument can stand before the need to do the obvious moves at the right moment.
However, the obvious moves are still pending. Uncritical generalizations of cheap “environmentalism” demonize our national wealth. So someone needs to explain to the 140 mining engineers coming out of the University and the 300 graduates of our Geological Schools that their studies are in vain and that their future holds unemployment as long as we interpret our mineral wealth as mineral … misery! Even in areas such as Halkidiki, which owes its name to copper (“halkos”) and is a place where people lived and prospered from mining activities over the centuries. And all those who are busy “demonizing” should take a walk in Sidirokafsia and Mademohoria and see for themselves.
In the end, the numbers speak for themselves. The investment of Hellas Gold in Halkidiki alone, brought upon the economy and society the following positive effects:
- For the national economy
- A one billion-dollar investment in a period of absolute lack of foreign direct investments in Greece
- 650 million dollars have already been invested in two years
- The Greek government is due to receive 1.6 billion dollars in the form of direct taxes
over the next two decades
- From 2012 until today 50 million dollars have been attributed to insurance funds
- The country’s exports will increase by 700 million Euros per year with the start of the production phase of the investment
- For the local economy
- Two thousand (2,000) jobs, 80% of which refer to the municipality of Aristotle
- A 45,000 Euro average annual income for each employee that supports the local market
- 83 million Euros directly to the local economy through procurement, purchasing, etc. during the period 2006-2014
- Strengthening of the Municipality of Aristotle with 3 million Euros per year from the Corporate Social Responsibility Program that will reach 8 million Euros per year at the production phase of the investment
Our mineral wealth is a strategic pillar for growth and Macedonia-Thrace can become the “growth jet” that will elevate the national economy. We should all consider, based on the above hard facts, what could the growth potential of our country be if the exploitation of our mineral resources related to the 10% of the GDP and not to the…2%, where it stands today. Let’s think about it and make decisions accordingly.
[SOURCE: KEFALAIO-NEWSPAPER, by Michalis Theodorakopoulos, Managing Director of Hellas Gold, 30/10/2015]