- Title: GREECE: People swarm to buy lottery tickets for 19 million euro jackpot
- Date: 17th April 2010
- Summary: ATHENS, GREECE (APRIL 15 2010) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF LOTTERY TICKET STATION PEOPLE ENTERING AND LEAVING STATION VARIOUS LOTTERY GAME POSTINGS ON WINDOW JOKER LOTTERY POSTING ON WINDOW JOKER LOTTERY POSTING WITH THE AMOUNT OF 19 MILLION EUROS WRITTEN ON IT SEVERAL PEOPLE CRAMMED INSIDE LOTTERY STATION PLAYING MORE OF PEOPLE LINED UP INSIDE STATION FILLING OUT TICKETS WOMAN FILLING OUT NUMBERS IN LOTTO ANOTHER WOMAN FILLING OUT LOTTERY TICKET AN OLD MAN FILLING OUT NUMBERS IN LOTTO VARIOUS OF PEOPLE LINED UP AT COUNTER TO COLLECT LOTTERY TICKETS (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) GREEK RESIDENT GEORGE LAMBRAKIS, A COURIER, SAYING: "We are in the middle of a crisis, and this is 19 million euros! Although I would be happy with one million, I don't need 19, I don't need all of it!"/ (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) GREEK RESIDENT THOMAS APERGIOS, A NIGHT GUARD, SAYING, "Its a lot of money, I don't need all of it, even 50 thousand would be good enough." PEOPLE BUYING LOTTERY TICKETS IN STATION LOTTERY TICKET IN PERSON'S HANDS LOTTERY STATION EMPLOYEE HANDING OUT TICKETS PERSON WITH LOTTERY TICKET IN HIS HAND (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) LOTTERY STATION EMPLOYEE KOSTAS DAVOLAS SAYING, "Its the first time there is such a big jackpot. People are playing a lot, there is a lot of betting going on." EXTERIOR OF LOTTO STATION SIGN ON DOOR SAYING "JOKER JACKPOT 19 MILLION!!!!"
- Embargoed: 2nd May 2010 13:00
- Location: Greece
- Country: Greece
- Topics: Economic News,Light / Amusing / Unusual / Quirky
- Reuters ID: LVAE7B4KS2M49J30QIC41TTAUYH0
- Story Text: There is one way to deal with a debt crisis: buy a lottery ticket, and scores of Greeks flocked to lottery stations on Thursday (April 15) to do just that, as one lottery had reached a record 19 million euro jackpot.
The "Joker" lottery has accumulated the 19 million euro prize after being rolled over since February, the first time the particular lottery, which is popular among Greeks, has accumulated such a large amount, and it cashes in on Thursday.
Lottery stations were brimming with people rushing to fill out tickets and try their luck.
"We are in the middle of a crisis, and this is 19 million euros! Although, I would be happy with one million, I don't need 19, I don't need all of it!" said motorcycle courier George Lambrakis.
"Its a lot of money, I don't need all of it, even 50 thousand would be good enough," said night watchman Thomas Apergiou.
Lottery station employees said people were flooding stations all day and they expected business to be heavy up until the numbers are called in the evening.
"Its the first time there is such a big jackpot. People are playing a lot , there is a lot of betting going on." said lottery station employee Kostas Davolas.
Greece asked on Thursday for official talks with European authorities and the International Monetary Fund, a step toward Athens obtaining billions of euros in emergency loans.
In a letter to the European Union, the European Central Bank and the IMF, Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou proposed discussions on "a multi-year programme of economic policies."
He said this "could be supported with financial assistance from the euro-area member states and the IMF, if the Greek authorities were to decide to request such assistance."
The IMF announced it would send a team to Athens on Monday, which a Greek government official said would be accompanied by teams from the European Commission and the ECB.
Greek and IMF officials stressed that Greece, struggling to finance a national debt greater than its annual economic output, had still not decided whether to apply to activate an emergency aid mechanism announced by euro zone governments last Sunday.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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