Weak exports hampering Greek recovery

The Greek economy may be basking in the glow of a record summer tourism season, but it is just one bright spot in a fragile recovery overshadowed by weak exports, economists say.

“Tourism did the best it could to lift the Greek economy but it can’t do it all,” said economist Panayiotis Petrakis at the University of Athens.

“It was a mistake to think during the planning of the international aid [for Greece] that the recovery would come from exports,” Petrakis added.

Unlike other debt-hit eurozone countries rescued by international bailouts, Greece’s exports have “only marginally recovered” from the low of 2008/09, the European Commission said in a June report.

Exports declined 0.2 percent between 2012 and 2013 (minus 2 percent without fuel and oil products) and minus 7.2 percent in the 12 months between October 2013 and September 2014.