The Greek economy is resilient to strong shocks, even after major crises

The Greek economy is resilient to strong shocks, even after major crises

The Greek economy has proven resilient to strong shocks, despite coming from a long and painful ten-year crisis, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said after meeting in Athens with European Stability Mechanism (ESM) chief Klaus Regling on Thursday.

After the meeting at the Finance Ministry, Staikouras said the economy "is showing signs of a development dynamic", something that was recognized in the Eurogroup of March.

Summarizing the results of 2021, the Greek FinMin said the following: recovery was strong, covering almost all losses of 2020; the GDP composition was improved, as there was a significant rise in investments and exports; the economic climate and confidence were boosted; turnover in businesses exceeded that of 2019; available income was supported; unemployment shrank; deposits rose; nonperforming loans in bank portfolios were reduced; and the economy was upgraded.

The strengthened foundation of the economy provides an optimistic outlook in the current energy crisis, and it is hoped that it will not derail the Greek economy or shatter the country's good image, Staikouras said.

Looking ahead, he said the targets included keeping a high rate of economic growth; improving the composition of the GDP further; coming out of the state of enhanced surveillance; gradually moving to a state of fiscal balance; using European funding effectively; and achieving investment grade.

Staikouras said that the current historic period was one of increased challenges that no European country could manage by itself. Coordinated European action to deal with the energy issue is necessary, he said, as "the Greek government continues despite the high level of global uncertainty to [...] implement policies for the all-around strengthening of the country and to contribute to finding the best solutions at European level."

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