Bank of Greece Chief Sounds Caution Despite Growth, Pushes Reforms

ATHENS – Greece should not become complacent about its still surging recovery, which has been a remarkable comeback from the economic and austerity crisis of 2010-2018, Bank of Greece Governor Yiannis Stournaras warned. He urged that reforms should continue.

Speaking to the central bank assembly, he noted that data are showing some stagnation after the economy expanded by almost 6% in 2023, driven by record tourism. However, this comeback is slowing in 2024.

Stournaras, who served as Finance Minister in a former coalition government led by New Democracy with the PASOK Socialists, emphasized the need for fiscal prudence. He stated that primary surpluses of at least 2% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) are necessary.

While all rating agencies except Moody’s have given Greece an investment-grade status, attracting more foreign investors, he mentioned, “Political, fiscal, and financial stability are public goods that must be preserved, especially in Greece, which just a few years ago emerged from the biggest economic crisis in its modern history.”

He added that the international competitiveness of the Greek economy, after significantly improving in previous years, showed signs of stagnation or even a slight retreat in 2023, amid a deteriorating environment for international trade.

He cautioned that there are weaknesses that could undermine the rebound, including the still lagging efficiency of the state, long delays in the judicial system where cases can take up to 10 years or more, and the notoriously sluggish bureaucracy.

The bank has forecast a 2.1% primary surplus, which does not cover the costs of debt – Greece is still repaying much of €326 billion ($354.11 billion) in three international bailouts – running state enterprises, and some military expenditures.

Despite the rescue packages, the debt rose by 10.7% in 2023 to 161.9% of GDP, a level that Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis deemed unsustainable when New Democracy was out of office. He now says it is manageable.

For 2024, the debt is estimated to be 152.3% but is expected to decrease in nominal terms for the first time since 2019, when the Conservatives took over. Growth is projected at 2.3% in 2024, compared to the government’s more optimistic forecast of 2.9%.


For the first time, Greek voters in the homeland and the Diaspora will be able to participate in elections for the European Parliament for the first time on June 9.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


2 Germans, a Spaniard and a Senegalese Killed in Building Collapse in Spain’s Mallorca Island

MADRID (AP) — Spain's National Police on Friday gave details on four people killed when a building housing a bar and restaurant club collapsed on the island of Mallorca.

NEW YORK – The New York Times has reported that “an aide to Mayor Eric Adams who served as his longtime liaison to the Turkish community has turned against him and is cooperating with the corruption investigation into Mr.

BOSTON – Crowds flocked to the Greek Festival of the St.

The news about air travel lately hasn't been pleasant.

Beyond the issues in Crete and our own in America, as we wrote in our ‘Analysis’ in last week’s edition, Patriarch Bartholomew has unfortunately ensnared himself in problems with the majority of local Orthodox Churches worldwide, with few exceptions such as those of Greece, Alexandria, and Cyprus, due to the granting of Autocephaly to Ukraine, which has proven to be ill-timed and ill-suited.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.