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Georgiadis: We should have taken measures for the passports

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Georgiadis: We should have taken measures for the passports

Former Minister of Finance Haris Georgiadis testified before the Research Committee for the Naturalization Program. Mr. Georgiadis stated that when he took over the Ministry of Interior, Konstantinos Petridis noticed distortions and informed both himself and the President of the Republic. In relation to his involvement in this process, he limited himself to meetings with large investors, while he was informed only about individual cases that justified a derogation.

Answering a relevant question, Mr. Georgiadis referred to the procedure followed by the Ministry during the examination of the applications and said that as a rule it was included in the issues that did not require an extensive discussion. He added that he did not in any case have to declare a sticking point for a possible conflict of interest when considering a naturalization. Mr. Georgiadis stated that he is not sure but he does not remember any other member of the Ministry doing the same.

READ ALSO: Live: Georgiadis's testimony to the research committee

The former Minister of Finance for most of the examination referred for the answers to the Ministry of Interior after stating that he was informed only when the competent directorate of the Ministry of Finance rejected a case or there was a serious reason for naturalization by way of derogation. Indicatively, as he mentioned, he had met only some big investors who participated in the program.

Regarding the manipulations made by the former Minister of Interior, Konstantinos Petridis, Mr. Georgiadis said that from the first moment he identified that the procedures of the Ministry were lagging behind and informed both the Minister of Finance and the President of the Republic. As a result, new procedures were introduced in 2018 such as the code of conduct and the register of providers.

Regarding the naturalization of company executives and not of the investors themselves, Mr. Georgiadis argued that the procedure followed was completely legal under the current legislation, saying characteristically: “Think of a large listed company with a wide distribution of share capital. Is the one I am interested in a shareholder who has a small percentage or the General Manager who will bring 500 million? ” Mr. Georgiadis said and added that “the law gave the right for naturalization. But I will not give a legal opinion “.

Asked whether the European Union or any other institution raised an issue for the program, Mr. Georgiadis referred to a visit of a European Parliament delegation at the end of 2017 or 2018 during which questions and concerns were raised. There is even a relevant report he said.

As for whether he is aware of cases of exceptional naturalizations that took place in violation of the law or the conditions set by the Council of Ministers, Mr. Georgiadis answered no for the first part and added “I would not use the word violation for the criteria either. Out of a total of 2900 cases, they must be units. Such cases are rare. I would guess a single digit number. Fewer than 10. Cases that occurred due to the wider financial interest. That is, the casino may not have made them buy a house because it was in the wider financial interest. “

Concluding his testimony, Mr. Georgiadis responded to a comment by Ms. Kalogirou about those who took advantage of the plan, saying “I agree, these are the similar positions I made before leaving the Ministry of Education. Unfortunately a plan used to support the economy was used by some for profit. Cases that saw the light of day, for example the Malaysian, I can not understand how a positive recommendation was given for this case. As a member of the Council of Ministers, I have a share of responsibility, when we were informed about the weaknesses, what was the reaction – and from the President of the Republic? That we must take our measures “.

Philenews / Insider

Source: www.philenews.com

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