Greece: the cradle of Western civilization ...
It is a pleasure for me to introduce Greece to the readers of Business Works. I would like to set the scene for the accompanying features that will introduce you to what Greece has to offer. Whether you want to do business, find an exciting place to organize your conference or event or just add a couple of days to a business trip to explore the country, Greece has a wealth of opportunities for you. And, of course, we would also love to welcome you for a vacation, whether you want to enjoy the sea and sun, investigate the thousands of years of history or the countryside, our mountains and culinary delights.
Greece has often been described as the cradle of Western civilization. It lies at the southeastern edge of Europe and is a land of mountains and of sea, where it is difficult to be far out of range of either - a factor of major influence on the country’s economic and historical development. It has an area of 131,957 square kilometres, of which approximately one-fifth consists of islands, explaining the country’s strong nautical tradition throughout its history. The meeting of land and sea creates an intricate pattern of islands, inlets, gulfs, and bays, while the recurring contrasts between the deep blue of sea and sky, the white of limestone crags and whitewashed buildings and the burnt-orange of tiled roofs, contribute to a quality of light that is unique.
Today, Greece is a modern, vibrant country at the crossroads of three continents - Europe, Asia, and Africa. Greece joined the EU at the beginning of 1981 and is now well anchored in the European zone of peace and stability and an important regional player.
Greece is a maritime and shipping centre and, as a result, plays a significant role in the world’s economy. Our merchant fleet remains the largest in Europe and the third largest in the world.
Since we hosted the Olympic Games in 2004, the country’s development has continued apace and our real GDP growth has consistently outstripped the EU-25 average. We are members of the EMU (European Monetary Union) and despite the global financial crisis, we expect our economy to continue to grow, although growth will be slowed down in the short-term.
As a result, Greece has attracted a significant amount of industrial investment – both from local and foreign companies. There is a real opportunity for investors to profit and the country is widely regarded as one of the most up-and-coming in terms of industrial growth.
One of the main priorities of our government is the enhancement of the Greek economy's potential for growth through the realization of structural changes. We are concentrating especially on increasing productivity, through reforms aimed at improving the business climate, reducing administrative expenditure and curtailing bureaucracy, improving public sector effectiveness and promoting innovation.
Greece’s strategic position also means that it is ideally situated to participate in the energy sector with major infrastructure projects underway. These include the pipelines for energy transmission in the East-West corridor to help bring gas to other parts of Europe.
In the accompanying articles you will discover in more detail some of the many things that Greece has to offer – whether for business, pleasure or both. We look forward to welcoming you to our home and helping you to make the most of what our country has to offer.
To find out more, please contact:
The Greek Embassy, 1A Holland Park, London W11 3TP
t: 020 7727 8860
t: +30 210 335 5700