Greece’s second annual InvestGR Forum was hosted in Athens in May, presenting the findings of the Metron Analysis survey of Greece as an investment destination.
The survey affirmed that the tourism, catering, energy, transport and real estate sectors are the most attractive for foreign investors. At the first InvestGR Forum in 2018, Metron Analysis found that 53% of CEOs said they would invest further in Greece.
According to data from the Bank of Greece, net inflows of FDI in Greece in 2018 were the highest of this decade, increasing 12.5% from 2017 to reach $4.1bn. Last year was the third consecutive year of increased FDI flows in the country, and the study suggests that this growth trend will continue in the next few years.
The most attractive sectors for investment in Greece are indeed, tourism, food catering, energy, transport and real estate, according to greenfield investment monitor fDi Markets; 89% of greenfield FDI to Greece went into these sectors between January 2018 to April 2019. Hotels and tourism was the biggest sector in terms of capital investments and projects, attracting $633m from 10 projects, 52.1% of the total $1.22bn of investment into the country during this period.
Germany's ambassador to Greece, Jens Ploetner, said at InvestGR Forum that Germany is Greece's largest trading partner. “FDI can and has to make a decisive contribution to the innovative recovery of the Greek economy," he said. "The country offers many attractive investment opportunities, which German companies are already successfully capitalising on.” Indeed, In 2017 Germany’s Fraport took over 14 of Greece’s regional airports for the sum of €1.23bn.
Although Greece is becoming an increasingly attractive destination for foreign investors, the CEOs interviewed by Metron Analysis suggested that question marks still remain over the administrative and taxation frameworks in the country, the perceived risk of corruption, and the speed in delivery of justice.
Such issues may receive more attention from Greece’s newly elected centre-right party New Democracy, which has promised to lower taxes and privatise services in the country.