ECONOMY

One-stop startup shops promise less red tape

Starting a business in Greece will be simpler as of Monday due to the introduction of a one-stop shop service that slashes bureaucracy.

The government aims to boost the economy, now in its third year of recession, by slashing bureaucratic and legal hurdles that have hampered the setting up of new businesses.

Through a wide network of contact points, including 59 chambers of commerce and 3,200 notary offices, a new firm can be established in a ?single procedure that lasts about one hour,? the Ministry for Regional Development and Competitiveness said in a statement on Sunday.

?One can establish a company at one point instead of eight, in one procedure instead of 11 and in one day instead of 38,? the ministry said in a statement.

The only prerequisite is that the person opening the company should not have any outstanding dues with the tax office or social security funds.

The ministry said Greece ranks ?149th among 183 countries? in an assessment index on procedures for registering a company.

Apart from helping investors save time and money, the new faster procedures help fight corruption due to the elimination of complicated procedures, the ministry added.