ATHENS – Greece has lost 62 percent of its investments in the last seven years as a crushing economic crisis threatens to leave it without any major enterprises.
That was the grim assessment from Theodoros Fessas, President of the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) who said that exports and production are also being crippled.
He said austerity measures and now, capital controls, have hurt business so much that manufacturing and industrial activity are nearing a stand-still as the government relies on tax hikes to try to right the economy.
“It is only with a wave of productive investments that we will stop burdening the real economy and labor with taxes on taxes and limp reforms that are to no one’s benefit in the end,” Fessas said.
SEV wants tax incentives primarily for financially beneficial investments, such as in the fields of innovation, export-oriented manufacturing activities and sevices.
The Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises (SETE) chimed in and agreed with the view, arguing that the country’s revenue drivers need a stable tax framework, reducing bureaucracy and upgrading public infrastructures, all of which governments have promised but failed to deliver.
A survey by the SEV Observatory showed that its Business Activity Facilitation Index declined dramatically because of constant rounds of high taxes, high social security contributions and red tape. .