ECONOMY

HEPO plan for exports

The Hellenic Export Promotion Organization (HEPO) is proposing a series of measures to improve the outward-looking orientation of the economy and the export performance of Greek enterprises under the Ministry of Development’s «Competitiveness» program, which is subsidized by the European Union’s Third Community Support Framework investment program. The proposals include more favorable treatment of enterprises that have applied for subsidies and whose investment plans are strongly export-oriented, and additional assessment points credited to export-oriented investment plans submitted for subsidy under the programs «Electronic Business» and «Young and Women Entrepreneurs.» Also, HEPO suggests financial support for the establishment of an agency of certified professionals to act as advisers to exporting small and medium-size enterprises. Such staff could replace researchers envisaged under the current «Heron» program. Further, it proposes two industrial parks for the production of intermediate products of electric and mechanical applications, as well as the financing of comprehensive plans for promoting Greek products in the USA, Russia, China, Canada and Australia. Finally, it proposes greater cultivation of the export goals of small and medium-size enterprises through the development of «Export Action Plans.» In order to implement this proposal, HEPO, in collaboration with the Federation of Greek Industries (SEV) and the consultants firm McKinsey, is launching a pilot program, sponsored by Economy Minister Nikos Christodoulakis, involving 40 enterprises. The program will be launched on July 23. HEPO also proposes financial support for the work of the Hellenic Packaging Institute (HPI), the only agency in Greece that grants quality certificates in packaging. The proposal aims to support HPI’s laboratory testing and its expansion into food packaging.