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Cablegate: Greece Cultivating Least-Developed Countries On

VZCZCXRO9545
PP RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHIK RUEHLZ RUEHROV
DE RUEHTH #1350/01 2671424
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 231424Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY ATHENS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2532
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ATHENS 001350

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT ALSO FOR EUR/ERA AND EUR/ACE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV EAID KMCA KCERS KIPR GR GA AF
SUBJECT: GREECE CULTIVATING LEAST-DEVELOPED COUNTRIES ON
CLIMATE CHANGE, IMPROVING IPR ENFORCEMENT AND CONTINUING
SUPPORT FOR GEORGIA

REF: A. (A) SECSTATE 100093
B. (B) ATHENS 1288

1. (SBU) Summary. In a wide-ranging discussion with DCM, MFA
Secretary General for International Economic Affairs Theodore
Skylakakis emphasized steps he is taking to improve contacts
with least-developed countries on climate change. He hopes
his efforts will lead to increased coordination, hopefully
improving the West's negotiating position i& &54QQ% !$)%!4%QQ
change negotiations. S)Q$!!!))1 34Q$Q1%$ Q(% )%portance of
the ECCC T) hiS %"baRQQ Ta !)iRdinate a broad range of
$!#"QQ)#!!Q$%!Q!)!Q )Qques with other ministries$ "!QQ"! )"QQ
QQQQ)!QQ!r that he was upbeat on ()1 I@R ! "#2QQQ Group" he
(!Q ""%!Q$$ 5"$$Q the aegis of his interagency IPR Committee.
Lastly, he said Greece, which had already donated more than
750,000 Euros in assistance to Georgia, was planning on
committing additional amounts at the upcoming EU Georgia
Donor's Conference. End Summary.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"We Need to Convince Them They Do Not Share
Climate Change Interests with China and India"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

2. (SBU) Skylakakis spoke with passion about his interest in
climate change, telling the DCM on September 19 that he has
taken on the title of "Coordinator for Climate Change Issues"
within the MFA. He noted that time was short for negotiating
the follow-up to the Kyoto Treaty, and expressed his view
that the West had not done enough to cultivate the large
number of least-developed countries. "At this point, they
almost automatically think they fall into a policy group led
by China and India. They do not." Skylakakis explained
that, whereas China and India are reaping high growth rates
in part as a result of lax environmental policies, the
least-developed countries are not. In fact, many of the
least-developed countries not only do not see any growth, but
are directly endangered by climate change. The West, in
Skylakakis' view, has not taken advantage of this to forge a
consensus with a significant voting bloc that could be very
influential in future climate change negotiations.

3. (SBU) Skylakakis pointed to a number of specific
agreements the GoG was about to conclude to help achieve his
vision. The first was an MOU with the African Union (which
in fact was signed by the Foreign Minister September 22).
Skylakakis, who is also in charge of Hellenic Aid (Greece's
USAID equivalent), said the MOU would incorporate a
significant assistance component of approximately 12 million
Euros. Secondly, Greece was aiming to sign a similar
agreement with Caribbean Community on September 23.

4. (SBU) The DCM thanked Skylakakis for his vision and
commitment, and agreed on the importance of thinking ahead
about the successor to Kyoto. She noted that the USG's
interest in the environment, already strong, was destined
only to intensify over the coming months and years. She
looked forward to working closely with Skylakakis on the best
way forward.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
IPR Working Group on Enforcement
Holds "Positive, Productive" Meeting
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

5. (SBU) Skylakakis gave a short read-out on IPR. He thanked
the DCM for the USG's heightened engagement with Greece on
the issue, illustrated by the recent visits of Commerce
Department and USTR staff. He acknowledged these
individuals' concern about the GoG's Interagency IPR
Committee not meeting again until December. What he hoped
that Washington-based USG personnel had taken away from their
recent visits, however, was the intensive, ongoing
preparations for the December meeting. Specifically, he had
created a number of lower-level working groups, which were
meeting now. The working group on enforcement, for example,
had met September 19 and included a wide-range of GoG
officials. He proudly noted the group included the Secretary
General of the Ministry of Interior as well as the police
lieutenant who actually worked IPR on the street. This group
had focused on ways to increase the number of raids on the
warehouses where IPR contraband was produced and stored. It
had also looked at ways to improve the information technology
used by Greek judges so that they would know when they were
trying repeat offenders. Skylakakis noted that there were a
number of other working groups in the process of meeting.

ATHENS 00001350 002 OF 002


One was focusing on the best ways to measure IPR violations
in Greece. Skylakakis promised to continue this work and to
continue his close cooperation with the Embassy on it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
GoG Plans to Announce Aditional
Commitment to Georgia at EU Donors Conference
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

6. (SBU) The DCM delivered Ref. A talking points on Georgian
assistance. Skylakakis indicated that the GoG is planning to
present a pledge of additional bilateral assistance (beyond
assistance outlined in Ref B) at the EU donors conference,
but is still deliberating on the right amount and type of
aid. Skylakakis noted that Greece has a strong record of
support for Georgia due to historical ties and the existence
of ethnic Greeks throughout Georgia, including in South
Ossetia.
SPECKHARD

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