Southern Greece Tobacco Growers’ Event with Mr. Michael Sallas as guest of honor

ΤOn Saturday morning, Mr. Michael Sallas, confirmed from Kavala, that Piraeus Bank will fully meet its mission as main supporter and financer of the rural economy sector.

The Chairman of Piraeus Bank Group was the guest of honor at an anniversary event for Contract Farming, held by "Missirian SA" in its factory premises in Kavala, in collaboration with its tobacco producers’ network. The event was attended by hundreds of tobacco producers from Northern Greece.

During his address, Mr. Sallas revealed that, apart from the extension of the Contract Farming and Livestock programs, Piraeus Bank will take new significant initiatives regarding producers, processors and everyone involved in the production, processing and trading of the country’s agricultural products. Mr. Sallas also emphasized that the Piraeus Bank Contract Farming and Livestock program has already from the first year of its full implementation left its quantitative and qualitative “footprint”, since it upgrades the commercial operation in the primary sector and leads those who are part of improving quality and increasing income. “Piraeus Bank has now strong expertise to serve the whole Agrofood chain, so it can and will take initiatives of huge importance to the benefit of National Economy" he said, while stressing that that the bank "has the necessary resources but mainly the will to do so”.

Until today, Piraeus Bank has concluded over 100 Contract Farming and Livestock programs, in which more than 14.00 farmers participate, resulting to an amount of exports of around one billion Euros, a number representing 20% of Greek agricultural products’ exports.

At the event organized for Contract Farming by “Missirian” tobacco industry, also spoke the Deputy CEO of Piraeus Bank Mr. Christodoulos Antoniadis, who noted the great importance of farmers’ return to tobacco growing. “Increased consumption worldwide, the rising course of commercial price and investments by tobacco companies and contract farming, turn more and more farmers to the cultivation of tobacco» Mr. Antoniadis said. As he also stressed, today tobacco “flourishes” in all Northern Greece Prefectures, showing an increase by 30% in 2013, on farmland in specific varieties.

In his address, Chairman and CEO of "Missirian SA" Mr. Nicholas Tzoumas, noted that the company collaborates with 3,000 tobacco farmers, processes 10,000 tonnes of tobacco annually, which it exports to 27 countries worldwide, while in the last three years the company has invested EUR 3.2 million euros. The Head of “Missirian” tobacco industry highlighted the significant role and contribution of Piraeus Bank to rural development and tidying up of the agricultural production.

Finally, the representatives of tobacco growers’ organizations also spoke about the importance of their collaboration with Piraeus Bank.

Athens 30 November 2014