Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

Unkonventionelle Lösungen für eine zukunftsfähige Gesellschaft

Greece – A Surprise For 2016?

Posted by hkarner - 24. Januar 2016

Saturday, January 23, 2016, Observing Greece Kastner

„I believe 2016 will be the year that Greece will surprise the world economic community, Alexis Tsipras declared in Davos. Could he turn out to be right?

Well, I suppose he meant ’surprise‘ in a positive way. And, yes, he could turn out to be right. Providing, of course, his government remains stable throughout the year.

I have no hard facts to support my position but I cannot ignore what happened in 2015. By all standards, Greece fell into political and economic chaos in 2015, at least during the first half of the year. In those days, it was clear to everyone that the small primary surplus of 2014 would evaporate and turn into a mega primary deficit in 2015, and that a small projected 2015 GDP growth would turn into a GDP decline to the tune of 3-4%. I do not recall any more positive projections.

And yet, 2015 did not turn out negative at all. The current account reached an all-time high and there WAS a primary surplus, not a small one at that and much larger than in 2014. I would go so far as to say that the figures for 2015 defy everything that happened during the year.

Which brings me to 2016. There seems to be some hidden resilience in the Greek economy which the naked eye does not see at first glance. And the statistics don’t seem to catch it, either. And perhaps after nearly 6 years of crisis, of continuous decline, Greeks have become accustomed to that new level and begin building on it instead of only complaining about it. Perhaps more energies are really being put to better use now.

Of course everything could change quickly. The government could fall over the pension reform and political chaos could return. Grexit could happen. We’ve been through all that. BUT: if all of that were not to happen, I think there is a fair fighting chance that Greece will indeed surprise the world economic community in 2016.

 

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