ECONOMY

Crisis, low competitiveness drag exports 18 pct lower

Greek exports fell 17.8 percent year-on-year in 2009 due to the global crisis, the country’s declining competitiveness and strike action by groups of workers, including stevedores, according to the Panhellenic Exporters Association (PEA). Data from the association, which represents about one-third of the country’s export businesses, said that the value of exports last year fell to 14.3 billion euros from 17.4 billion euros in the previous year. «The data show the need for the immediate implementation of an aggressive national strategy to facilitate doing business abroad while aiming at achieving a new growth model for the Greek economy,» said PEA president Christina Sakellaridis. Imports over the same period plunged at an annual rate of 30 percent to 42.6 billion euros.