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Greece: Country and Foreign Investment

Executive Summary

According to the International Monetary Fund, as of 2013, Greece has the 42nd highest GDP per capita in the world. It is ranked as 29th on the UN's Human Development Index (a comparative measure of life expectancy, literacy, education, standards of living, and quality of life).

Greece has the largest economy in the Balkans and the 13th largest economy in the European Union. Greece was a founding member of both the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC), has been a member of the European Union (and its predecessors) since 1981, and replaced the Greek drachma to join the eurozone monetary union in 2001.

With around 20 million visitors per year, 16% of Greece's GDP is derived from tourism. A further 4.5% of the country's GDP is derived from the shipping industry, which has been a key part of Greek economic activity since ancient times. The Greek Merchant Navy is the largest in the world, with Greek-owned vessels accounting for more than 157% of global tonnage.

The recent global financial crisis has hit Greece particularly hard, with the country's debt-to-GDP levels far exceeding eurozone averages. This has led to the MSCI and S&P Dow Jones Indices reclassifying Greece as an emerging market - the first time such a scenario has happened to a developed nation.

 

 

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