Hoping to attract investors, Greece is still sinking in World Competitiveness Ranks and is 56th among 61 countries.
That was the finding of the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) as the country’s economy continues to implode after six years of failed bailouts and austerity measures that have only worsened the problem.
An avalanche of new taxes about to be imposed by the ruling coalition led by the Radical Left SYRIZA party of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will whack businesses with more tariffs at the same time he’s appealing for investors to take a chance on the country.
Capital controls the government imposed last year are still mostly in place discouraging investors and with banks still not lending because of a mountain of bad loans.
Greece is ahead only of almost-failed states such as Brazil, Venezuela and Ukraine and behind poorer countries such as Romania and Bulgaria, former Soviet bloc members.
In 2014, Greece had risen to a still-abysmal 50th after austerity drove down salaries of workers, pleasing businesses which didn’t want to pay them so much.
Each country’s position on the list is determined by its performance in four categories. Greece fell precipitously in Business Efficiency, from 43d to 57th last year after SYRIZA took over.
Greece is dead last for Financial Risk and Credit Sector Operation after talk last year the government might seize bank accounts, leading customers to spirit away scores of billions of euros and squirrel it away in safes, under their mattresses and anywhere else it couldn’t be confiscated.
The survey also found that Greece has a terrible reputation abroad from businesses afraid to put their money in an unstable country with a volatile government and tax laws that can change several times a year.
In the other three main categories, Greece remained in 58th for Financial Returns, fell two spots to 59th in Government Efficiency during the coalition’s chaotic beginning, and dropped from 35th to 38th for Infrastructure.