Tech items bolstering exports

Economy benefits mainly from development of green technology products sold abroad

Tech items bolstering exports

Not only did Greek exports reach a historic high for the full year 2022, but there are some products that are constantly making gains over their competitors in international markets.

While one of them is olive oil, which is favored at a time of extremely reduced production in Spain, the same is not true of LED lamps and other products: Green technology machines such as electric meters but also solar water heaters, which are steadily increasing their penetration of foreign markets, are creating a strong base for high value-added exports.

The fact that 2023 is also off to a positive start, with high technology remaining a key driver of growth and investment in research and development growing, increases the likelihood of medium-term export growth of 8% per annum (in real terms), up from 5%, which constitutes the basic scenario, estimates the Directorate of Economic Analysis at the National Bank of Greece.

If nothing else, exports of goods, essentially the only lifeline of the Greek economy during the years of the crisis, before the great development of tourism even began, have confirmed their endurance both during the pandemic and in the recent inflationary crisis.

In the 2010-16 period, when Greek businesses faced the most severe adversity associated with the crisis, exports of goods recorded an average annual real growth rate of 5.3%. The upward trend continued in the 2017-19 period and, indeed, in 2018 the contribution of goods exports to the real rate of change in Greece’s GDP reached 1.5 percentage points, a performance higher than almost the entire previous 20 years. 

Therefore, while exports of goods as a percentage of GDP were only 8.5% in 2009, they reached 18% in 2019. During the pandemic, excluding petroleum products, Greek exports endured and ended 2020 with positive signs.

However, Greece still has a long way to go as the country remains dependent on imports. This was especially evident in 2022 when, also due to the inflationary crisis, the trade deficit increased by 50.7% compared to 2021, reaching 38.37 billion euros.

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