Greek enterprises were shaken up, streamlined and transformed during the economic crisis of the last 10 years. However, their increased competitiveness has failed to bolster the economy, and while the country appears to be emerging from the financial crisis, the business environment does not allow for strong and sustainable growth, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers.
PwC’s study, titled “10 Years of Crisis” and presented on Thursday in Athens, argues that the Greek crisis has been the longest and deepest ever recorded in the post-war Western world. Even so, the changes it generated were “not seismic.” Local enterprises may have been forced to adjust to the new conditions, but appear unable to participate in a future cycle of growth.
The PwC analysts attribute this defensive attitude of the Greek business world to three main factors: First, the cost of borrowing for enterprises, which remains high despite the recent drop; second, the continued operation of zombie companies, as PwC describes them, because they absorb resources from the healthy economy; and third, the reluctance of corporations to make investments, even though their operating profits have returned to pre-crisis levels.