The country’s export industry has saved the national economy for the second time in the last few years, as, after the considerable growth Greek exports showed during the decade-long financial crisis, they are also showing significant resilience during the new crisis brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
At the same time the manufacturing sector has also displayed some resilience, thanks to the consistency Greek enterprises have shown their foreign clients, despite the problems in goods transportation, and thanks to the fact that several commercial enterprises in Greece turned to Greek suppliers given those problems in production and transportation, mainly from Asia.
The maintenance of a positive course in exports and the recovery of the manufacturing sector, which suffered an inevitable blow from the reduction of domestic and international consumption, constitute a challenge for the Greek economy – not just now amid the pandemic, but also in the future – as they create many permanent jobs.
The figures published on Wednesday by the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) reveal an increase in exports for February 2021 too, which was even greater than that of the previous month. This is partly due to the start of the coronavirus’ effect being felt on the economy from February 2020 due to the start of the pandemic in some of the countries Greece sends its products to.
In February 2021 the value of Greek exports amounted to 2.88 billion euros, including fuel products, up 8.5% from a year earlier, while excluding fuel there was also an increase, amounting to 3.7% year-on-year. Remarkably, February was the sixth consecutive month of export growth (excluding fuel), while last year posted an increase of 3.3% from 2019.
Besides the fact that increased exports contribute toward the sustainability of many Greek enterprises, they also contain the trade deficit, in combination with the reduced imports: In the first two months of this year the trade deficit dropped 22.6% (when fuel is excluded).