ECONOMY

Greek entrepreneurship report

Greeks are strongly business-oriented, according to the findings of a survey released yesterday. According to the survey, which was prepared by the Institute for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE) for 2006, 16 percent of the active population was engaged in some form of entrepreneurial activity and a slightly smaller proportion was planning to start some form of business in the medium term. More than 1.1 million people, or 16 percent of those aged 18-64, were in business. Of these, 600,000 were well-established entrepreneurs, while about 540,000 were start-ups. Moreover, 965,000 (14.2 percent) said they planned to start some business activity in the next three years. By contrast, about 180,000 (2.7 percent) had been obliged to cease their business activity. The IOBE report also shows that the average age of new aspiring entrepreneurs rose from 36.5 years in 2005 to 38 in 2006. Some 20 percent of entrepreneurs were necessity-driven, their efforts born from a lack of any alternatives, the survey says. Two out of five female and one out of five male entrepreneurs had started their business out of necessity. The report also shows that entrepreneurship in Greece, as also worldwide, remains a predominantly «male» affair, with men representing 70 percent of the total. But, as Development Minister Christos Folias noted in an address at the survey presentation, «female» entrepreneurship was gaining ground. «The proportion of women entering business was found to be on the rise for the second year in a row, and our country, for the first time, rose above the European average in the participation of women in business,» he said. The IOBE report also found that entrepreneurship was particularly attractive to secondary school leavers, half of whom belong to the highest income bracket of the population.