Tuesday, 16 April 2024

“Greece's well-trained human resources are a guarantee on the road to business success”. The theme of the event organized by Enterprise Greece within the framework of the Delphi Economic Forum


“Greece's well-trained human resources are a guarantee on the road to business success”. The theme of the event organized by Enterprise Greece within the framework of the Delphi Economic Forum

Athens, April 16th, 2024 | Enterprise Greece organized a very interesting discussion on the subject “Why invest in Greece: Harnessing Greece's highly trained human capital - a guarantee on the road to business success” on April 11th, 2024, within the framework of the Delphi Economic Forum. The event aimed at showcasing a unique competitive advantage of our country, i.e. its human resources, as they are recruited by companies that have already invested in Greece.

The event was inaugurated by the Secretary General for International Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and President of Enterprise Greece, Ms. Maira Myrogianni, while the discussion was moderated by Ms. Eftichia Kasselaki, Partner, Consulting Services, People Advisory Services Leader, EY Greece. Participants in the discussion included Dr. Marinos Giannopoulos, CEO of Enterprise Greece, Mr. Michalis Kassimiotis, CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Mr. Nico Gariboldi, Pfizer, Thessaloniki Site Lead and Centre for Digital Innovation-CDI Lead. The discussion focused on Greece's strategic advantages as an investment destination, focusing on its human resources as a key driver of business success and innovation.

The Secretary General for International Economic Affairs and President of Enterprise Greece, Ms. Maira Myrogianni, referred, among other things, to the investment opportunities offered by Greece which, having emerged from the crisis, now has the second highest growth rate among Eurozone countries. In particular, she stressed the importance of human capital in attracting Foreign Direct Investment, especially for companies seeking skilled and educated labour. To this end, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is exploring potential joint actions with the business and academic community, in order to enhance the comparative advantage presented by qualified personnel.

During her address, Ms. Kasselaki noted that the appetite for investment in Greece is increasing, with 40% of respondents to EY's 2023 survey on Attractiveness in Greece saying that they plan to set up or expand their operations in Greece in the coming year. Furthermore, she stressed that, according to the same survey, 32% of respondents cited the availability of a highly skilled talent pool as a key factor contributing to Greece's increased attractiveness. Ms. Kasselaki concluded that the further development of the education system and skills training is a key priority for maintaining the country's competitive position as an attractive destination for skilled human resources, providing businesses with human capital possessing modern and highly sought-after skills.

Mr. Giannopoulos stressed that our country's human talent is a strategic advantage for foreign investors, due to the emphasis that Greeks place on education, especially in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) fields and its multilingual proficiency. The country's high rankings in the global innovation and talent competitiveness indices reflect its commitment to foster an environment of continuous education and training. This intellectual capital, combined with the country's commitment to research and development, places Greece in a favourable position as a destination for investors seeking human capital capable of adapting to rapid technological developments and meeting complex global challenges.

Mr. Kassimiotis referred to the successful operation of the Global Centre of Excellence in AI and Machine Learning, which has been active in our country for over a year. The competitive advantages of Greece, according to Mr. Kassimiotis, are the high-quality human capital, the specialized workforce, the country’s strategic position and the government’s support. All these prove the country's high position in the growing technology sector. Mr. Kassimiotis stressed that Greece ranks third in Europe in terms of Elite AI researchers, its attractiveness for young talented people, and the balance it has created in the innovation ecosystem. He also referred to Greece's competitiveness as a technology hub, since it taps into technology sectors ranging from tourism to renewable energy sources and fintech, an effort that can benefit from the upcoming National Supercomputer - Daedalus. As Chairman of the ICT Committee for AmCham Greece, he concluded by pointing out that he wants to help align educational programs with industry requirements and cultivate an effective cooperation at various levels of the industry, in order to promote Greece's digital and economic development.

Mr. Gariboldi pointed out that Greece is increasingly evolving into an attractive international destination with the potential to become an international innovation hub. The high level of human resources, the internationally renowned universities, the dynamically growing innovation ecosystem and the country's growth rate highlight the business opportunity that Greece has to offer. All these reasons have been contributing factors to the success of Pfizer's investment in Thessaloniki, which started in 2020 with the operation of the Centre for Digital Innovation (DGI), and has now grown to include 4 global organizations and over 1,000 people.

The event closed with a special presentation on “HR Strategies for Developing and Retaining Top Talent in Greece” by Mr. Konstantinos Mylonas, CEO, VP Adecco & Head of Greece & Bulgaria Public Affairs, EE & MENA. Mr. Mylonas stressed the fact that current data demonstrate this tendency to curb the brain drain phenomenon, and shared with the participants strategies for the development and retention of talent in Greece. He also underlined that, according to global competitiveness indices, Greece has human resources with excellent qualitative aspects, such as education and training, culture and diversity, which can act as a catalyst for growth. Within this context, it is imperative to promote investment opportunities for the further exploitation of the country's human capital.