Economy’s pillars see big losses

Tourism, exports and shipping showed a massive combined loss of 11.4 billion euros last year, which amounts to 4.8 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, according to data issued yesterday by the Bank of Greece. Losses in tourism last year came to 1.26 billion euros, shipping lost 5.63 billion euros (i.e. 2.37 percent of GDP) and exports shrank by 4.5 billion euros. However, the considerable drop in the price of oil in 2009 compared with 2008 has lowered the current account deficit, which at end-2009 came to 26.7 billion euros, or 11.26 percent of GDP, from 34.79 billion euros at the end of 2008. In December 2009, receipts from tourism dropped by 13 percent and from shipping by 7.8 percent, while exports registered minimal growth year-on-year (0.8 percent). Foreign direct investment in Greece dropped by 21.3 percent in 2009 from the year before, as investment from Greece to countries abroad flagged by 19.8 percent.

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