Greece, a member of the European Union (EU), provides interesting opportunities for foreign investment. Greece’s membership in the EU’s Economic and Monetary Union offers currency stability. Its infrastructure has improved significantly in the last five years and the ongoing liberalization of the energy and telecommunication markets provide a solid foundation for investors. Greek businesses are among the leading investors in Southeast Europe and Greece is actively positioning itself as a hub for Balkan trade. Like many countries in today’s economic environment, Greece is facing its share of challenges but a new government, working in concert with the EU, has pledged to tackle many of Greece’s financial constraints.
Services represent the largest and fastest growing sector of the Greek economy. Trade, banking, insurance, transportation and shipping, communications, healthcare, education, and tourism are the largest service sub-sectors. Energy is a best prospect for U.S. companies because of the deregulation of Greece’s energy market and there are many opportunities for U.S. businesses in the electricity, gas, and renewable energy sectors.
Greece’s proximity to other countries in Southeastern Europe and the traditional trade ties of Greek businesspeople with these neighboring countries, offer a variety of additional opportunities for U.S. businesses with Greek partners. Greece, particularly through its northern port city of Thessaloniki, sees itself as a natural gateway to the Balkan countries. Greek firms enjoy good commercial ties to central and eastern European markets including the Black Sea region. U.S. firms may wish to target these markets from a base in Greece or to explore three-way arrangements with Greek companies or partners.
Greece presents itself as a ‘springboard’ for U.S. firms entering the evolving markets in the region as it offers investors a favorable investment environment through a combination of:
- Growth above EU average
- Accessibility to the sizeable emerging markets of the Black Sea, the Eastern European, and the Eastern Mediterranean regions. This may be achieved by setting up a company in Greece or by teaming up with one of the many Greek companies that are active in these markets
- Generous investment incentives
- Productive and highly skilled human resources
- Competitive industry sectors, optimal supply and great variety of raw materials
- A great infrastructure network, upgraded for the 2004 Olympic Games
- One of the top tourist destinations in the world that attracts more than 14 million visitors annually.
For more information, please visit: http://export.gov/greece/