Greek companies saw turnover surge in the second quarter of 2021, an expected development given that lockdown restrictions began to be lifted in April, starting with retailers, while tourism and catering reopened in May.
Despite the restart, however, turnover is still slightly lower than pre-pandemic levels, a result of continued restrictions and households’ reluctance to spend because of a persisting perception of uncertainty.
An exception to this is manufacturing, whose total turnover in Q2 was €17.97 billion, compared to €16.72 billion in 2019.
Data released Tuesday by independent statistics authority ELSTAT showed that total turnover for Greek firms in Q2 2021 was €78.38 billion, or 29.4% higher than during the same period in 2020 (€60.57 billion). That’s still 3.26% below the 2019 figure of €81.02 billion.
Among the 210,217 businesses that suspended their operations when the first lockdown started, in March 2020, second quarter turnover was €5.83 billion, compared to €3.49 billion last year, a 66.7% increase. In 2019, these companies had a turnover of €7.8 billion, or 25.6% higher than this year.
The greater rise in turnover, unsurprisingly, was in the accommodation and food service activities sector; it reached €1.638 billion, 118.5% higher than in 2020 (€750 million), but 52.3% lower than during the second quarter of 2019 (€3.43 billion).
Food services companies that suspended their operation last year saw quarterly turnover 64% higher than 2020 (€988.221 million from €602.595 million) but 31% lower than in 2019 (€1.44 billion). Turnover in accommodation was 481% higher than in 2020 (€575.315 million from €99.023 million), but 68% lower than in Q2 2019, when it reached €1.8 billion.
This year, the tourism season opened on May 15, almost a month earlier than in 2020, while some food services restriction were lifted in early April. Indoor dining is still restricted to the fully vaccinated, and then only 14 days after they have completed their vaccination schedule. These restrictions will continue into the autumn.
Retail fared much better: Turnover in 2021, at €2.86 billion, was only slightly lower than in 2019 (€2.91 billion).