Greek PM thanks Melbourne’s Greek community ‘for their leadership’

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis met with a delegation from the Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) at the Maximos Mansion in Athens on July 14.

The Melbourne delegation included GCM President Bill Papastergiadis OAM and Treasurer Associate Professor Marinis Pirpiris.

papastergiadis said neos cosmos that the “GCM delegation was warmly received by the Greek Prime Minister and the issues of culture, language and educational ties formed the backbone of our discussion.”

Mr. Mitsotakis was briefed on the various cultural, educational and other activities of the GCM. The meeting was attended by Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Andreas Katsaniotis, Secretary General of the Standing Committee for National Defense and Foreign Affairs Tasos Hatzivasiliou, Secretary General of Greek Abroad and Public Diplomacy John Chrysoulakis.

Mr Mitsotakis thanked the GCM for “their leadership” and said he “appreciated their efforts to promote the modern image of Greece in Australia”.

The prime minister focused on relations between Greece and the diaspora. He pointed to new digital services like My Consul Live, now available to expats.

“The new digital systems will bring faster and more efficient consular services to the entire diaspora,” said Mr. Mitsotakis.

Bill Papastergiadis OAM, Chairman of the GCM (L) with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis (R) in Athens on July 14. Photo supplied

Mr. Papastergiadis advocated links between Australian and Greek universities. As a board member of the University of Melbourne, Mr Papastergiadis emphasized that Australian universities have extensive partnerships with a variety of tertiary institutions in Europe, Asia and North America, but appear to lack the same links with Greek universities.

The GCM president emphasized the “importance of students completing part of their university career in Greece, something that many thousands of Australian students are doing abroad each year”. He also referred to the “need for recognition by both countries of university degrees.”

Mr. Papastergiadis also thanked the Deputy Foreign Minister, Mr. Katsaniotis, and the Secretary General for Greeks Abroad, Prof. John Chrysoulakis, for the “cultural and educational camp that recently started in Thessaloniki with the participation of over 40 young Greek Australian adults.

The GCM Chairman highlighted the success of the Victorian Government-funded Open Horizons exhibition at the Melbourne Museum in association with the National Archaeological Museum of Greece, and GCM’s involvement. He said that Minister Lina Mendoni’s commitment “to expand Greece’s cultural offer to the diaspora is welcome” and expressed confidence that “there will be more to come”.

Mr. Papastergiadis underlined the “ongoing discussions with the Greek Tourist Office, as well as with Enterprise Greece, securing a foothold in Melbourne”.

He said there were “positive steps taken by both governments on a double taxation agreement” adding that “a sub-committee of Greek Australians who provided input on the agreement, as well as a bilateral health agreement that would ensure proper health, did a great job. “. coverage for their respective citizens abroad.

The meeting ended with a discussion about a possible visit by the Greek Prime Minister, Mr. Mitsotakis, to Australia.

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