«The development of business co-operations between companies of Australia and Greece is designed by the Greek-Australian Chamber of Commerce while the exports of Cretan products continue to gain ground in Australia», stressed in an interview to «In-On» magazine the president of the Cretan Association of Australia and New Zealand Mr. Yiannis Nikolakakis.
Question: How many members does the Cretan Association of Australia have?
Answer: There are 30.000 Cretans who live in Australia and New Zealand and nine (9) associations that are members of the Federation.
Question: Is Greek language taught and learnt in the school curriculum of secondary education?
Answer: There are more than 60 Greek schools in Australia where the Greek language is solely taught. During the last 15 years the Greek language is officially in the curriculum as a second language.
Question: Is there a plan to invest in Greece or for a co-operation between the Cretans who live in Australia and Greek business people?
Answer: The organization that already exists in Australia and aims at networking Greek enterprises with Australian companies as well as at a closer co-operation is the Greek-Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (HAACCI). It has to be noted that during the visit of the Prefect of Rethymnon-Crete Mr. George Papadakis in Melbourne, a meeting was realized with the members of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry HAACCI in order to discuss every possibility that the enterprises of both countries share to start working closer together. Already, a lot of food products that are imported to Australia from Greece, as well as the quantity of foods like cheese, olive oil, honey, olives and rusks which are exported from Crete to Australia, increase annually.
Question: Which are the preparations for the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Crete?
Answer: Regarding the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Crete an annual conference will be held in January 2011 in Tasmania, where a lot of the descendants of the veterans will participate.
Australia and New Zealand share a historical alliance with Greece. In May 1941, during the Battle of Crete more than 3.000 soldiers from Australia and New Zealand were wounded or killed and 5100 were arrested. The 70th anniversary is supported by the Australian government and the events will be held not only in Australia but in Crete as well with Greek and Australian veterans.
Question: What cultural events will be realized in 2011?
Answer: The cultural events are the following:
– The meeting of PSK (Organizing Committee for the co-ordination of the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Crete) in August 2011 in Crete
– A Cretan theatrical performance in Australia
– Two groups of Cretan musicians will visit Australia in May and November 2011
– A charity event on behalf of the Cretans in Melbourne in order to raise money for the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne. It has to be noted that during the last four years more than $ 250.000 has been donated
Question: Are there suggestions by the Federation so as Greece escapes economic crisis?
Answer: Greeks have to admit that if Greece is to be distinguished as an international player regarding businesses and commerce, then it has to become more competitive. If Greek economy does not become competitive, it will never improve itself. During the International Conference of Cretans in Agios Nikolaos regarding entrepreneurship in July 2010, we witnessed a brilliantly-organized conference equivalent to international standards. This fact proves that Greece can establish an organized economical route on the condition that Greeks wish that.
Yiannis Nikolakakis is the president of the Cretan Association of Australia and New Zealand and a member of the International Council of Cretans. He was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1969. Both his parents were born in Crete and immigrated to Australia in 1962. After finishing school, he started working in the family business that his parents had created 34 years ago. Today, along with his brother Spyros they run the company having offices and warehouses in every Australian state to distribute products used in commercial appliances.
The relationship with the personnel, the clients and the suppliers constitutes a major factor that contributes to a successful enterprise in the competitive global market of today. Most of the products that the company distributes come from manufacturers from Germany and Austria, who are the main suppliers of the international market.
Source of publication 11th edition In-On