News in Brief – November 22
- Greek Economy – The European Commission sees Greece’s economy growing at a 6.0% rate this year, according to its latest autumn economic forecast, twice the European Union average. For 2023, the Commission forecasts Greek GDP expanding at a 1.0% rate, the third fastest growth rate in the Eurozone and three times faster than the European average.
- Business Environment — Greece led the world in improving its business environment over the last three years, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit business environment rankings, jumping 16 notches from its previous position. The survey ranks 81 countries by measuring the attractiveness of the business environment using an analytical framework with 91 indicators.
- Natural Gas – Petroleum giant ExxonMobil is beginning exploration of two offshore blocks southwest of the Peloponnese and west of Crete to search for natural gas. The move comes as Greece seeks to reduce its imports of Russian gas and develop its own hydrocarbon reserves. The results of the seismic surveys are expected next year.
- Renewable Energy – Greece is one of the best countries in the world for investments in renewable energy, according to a new survey by international consultancy EY. The EY Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index ranks Greece 16th of 40 economies worldwide – and second in the world when adjusted for the size of its economy – thanks to legislative and other steps taken to promote renewable energy projects.
- Innovation Hub – U.S. financial services giant JP Morgan announced plans for a new Payments Innovation Lab in Greece with plans to hire about 50 people. The lab will be involved in global R&D relating to the bank’s payments business, including for its Onyx unit, which is responsible for blockchain innovations, as well as distributed ledger technology, artificial intelligence and cryptography.
- Banks Upgrade – International credit ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service upgraded its ratings of six Greek banks and its macroeconomic profile of the country to reflect the improved economic standing of Greece. “Structural improvements and reforms have improved the economy’s resilience to shocks. As a result, Moody’s has raised the Macro Profile it assigns to Greece to ‘Moderate-‘ from ‘Weak+’,” the agency said in its assessment.
- Tourism Awards – Athens was named as the World’s Leading Cultural City Destination for 2022 at this year’s World Travel Awards, beating rivals like New York and London. The annual awards also recognized the region of Attica as the World’s Leading Sustainable Tourism Destination.