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EY: More Foreign Investors Betting on Greece

Source: EY Attractiveness Survey, Greece 2021

Greece is winning over more foreign investors climbing to 23rd spot in 2020 in Europe from 29th in 2019, according to the latest Ernst & Young (EY) report released this week.

Based on the findings of EY’s Attractiveness Survey Greece 2021 presented this week by ΕΥ Greece CEO Panos Papazoglou during the “4th InvestGR Forum 2021: Reforming the Greek Economy”, the country is gaining ground as an investment option despite the insecurity and competition in the midst of the pandemic. 

In fact, more than half (57 percent) of investors polled said Greece’s management of the Covid-19 crisis has positively affected their view regarding its attractiveness as an investment destination.

Source: @EY_Greece

At the same time, Greece ranked 8th among the Top 10 most attractive FDI destinations with 10 percent of poll respondents claiming the country is among the top three most attractive in 2021.

EY analysts cite the country’s digital transition and focus on sustainability as key factors improving Greece standing in terms of investment interest.

A key takeaway: Greece improved it participation in EU direct foreign investments. According to the ΕΥ European Investment Monitor, the number of FDIs directed to Greece in 2020 rose by 77 percent compared to a 13 percent decline in investment activity across Europe.

A total of 62 percent of those polled believe Greece’s reputation as a possible investment destination has improved in the last year, while 75 percent expect further improvement in the next three years.

A large majority of companies at 71 percent (up from 62 percent in 2020 and 50 percent in 2019) said Greece is implementing  an attractive investment policy

A total of 34 percent of investors polled said they were interested in investing in Greece in the next year up from 28 percent in 2020. Investments will go into sales and marketing (33 percent), research and development (18 percent), and manufacturing (18 percent).

Meanwhile, more than half (51 percent) of those polled believe tourism will be the driver of the economy in the coming years. The figure however dropped from 52 percent in 2020 and from 69 percent in 2019.

One in four (26 percent up from 14 percent in 2020) said the focus was now on the digital economy, followed by logistics and distribution channels (25 percent), and energy and utilities services (21 percent).    

Advantages in Greece affecting its “attractiveness” include the quality of life (78 percent), transport and logistics infrastructure (76 percent), telecommunications and digital infrastructure (73 percent), and the level of skill of its human resources (70 percent). 

On the down side, corporate taxation (42 percent) and labor law flexibility (47 percent) are rated less positively.

Investors polled also believe the impact of the pandemic on investment plans is limited with the majority of companies claiming that they have not changed their investment plans (61 percent) or have decide to increase investments (9 percent). A total of 29 percent said they have postponed their planned investments until 2022 or later.

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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