Greek shadow economy at 24% of GDP, new study suggests

Shadow economic activity in Greece is equivalent to almost a quarter of national output, a study by the London-based Institute of Economic Affairs has found.

The research, published on Tuesday, found that Greece’s shadow economy was equivalent to 24 percent of GDP last year, which was one of the highest rates in Europe but lower than a decade earlier when it surpassed 28 percent.

Greece also had one of the highest rates of self-employment among EU countries with 48 percent of the active labor force working for itself.

Among OECD members, Greece also had the highest rate of illegal migrants in work, the report said. Illegal migrants account for 4.45 percent share of total employment.

“The causes of the shadow economy include tax and social security burdens, tax morale, the quality of state institutions, labour market regulation, the level of transfer payments and the quality of public services,” the IEA said in its conclusions.