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Greek crisis & private sector

(small-medium enterprises)

The few last years, the global community is suffering from an intense economic crisis which even though started in the United States it very soon reached epidemic proportions. The crisis rapidly expanded in the developed countries then in the whole world having a dramatic impact on the banking system and private businesses. Countries all around the world started immediately taking measures in order to encounter the crisis. Although the measures might differed from country to country they all had a common goal. Improve the monetary liquidity, mobilize investments in order to boost the economy and retain employment. According to Koufaris (Κουφάρης) economic crisis is a state during which an economy is characterized by a sustained and significant decline in economic activities. Economic activity are all the aggregates such as employment, prices, investments, etc, with investments being the most important one since when they vary, they affect the rest of the financials. Unfortunately, Greece is a part of the problem as well since the crisis hit Europe. Eurozone's inflation is more that doubled. Prices going up evolved into a major social problem for all countries. Unemployment is a serious threat to most societies. The European Union growth rates have fallen to half. Most financial institutions are falling apart. There are a few people refusing to check out what is going on a global level and accusing the greek government for everything. Koufaris (Κουφάρης) states that the economy is affected by politics, the human nature and what is considered to be the proper behavior. As of today Greece lacks the means and the crisis is difficult to be solved by the markets or the state itself. The first results of the economic crisis came up during 2008. The total investments fell to about 8% of GDP, 4,5percentage points compared to 2007. This marks the first decreases in citizen's incomes and also postpones the implementation of investment projects in the private sector because of the demand reduction which was caused by the economic crisis. The economic crisis also affected the greek private sector. Probably the private sector suffered the most important consequences of the economic crisis. The debt crisis acted as a catalyst through the recession, restraining the banking system took away funding opportunities and the number of taxes left no room to breath for the smaller enterprises. The workers in the private sector had their income cut or paid later. They also experienced reversals in their labor relations which caused them to work under a state of fear and absolute insecurity. The greatest proof of the above consequences is the raising unemployment levels of 23%. Approximately 600,000 new unemployed workers is the price of the crisis on the private sector. On the other hand the public sector may suffered income cuts, but at least no job was lost. The small and medium enterprises which are the biggest part of the greek private sector were hit by the crisis as well. According to a research which took place in behalf of SESMA (ΣΕΣΜΑ (Σύνδεσμος Εταιρειών Συμβούλων Μάνατζμεντ Ελλάδος)) in 120 greek enterprises: • The economic crisis and the memorandum seem to have a negative impact on the enterprises • 9 out of 10 enterprises claim that the impact the economic crisis had on them was probably negative/negative • The main goal for enterprises at the moment is to survive • 9 out of 10 enterprises declare that they are a little or not satisfied by the terms and measure imposed by the memorandum

• 7 out of 10 enterprises believe the debt to be not manageable • Incentives for new investments, taxes' reduction and promoting innovation should be points of high priority for the state • As long as business consultants are concerned, 2/3 of the enterprises believe that their role is important for the country's development Even though it may sound outrageous or suspicious or even funny to you, the greek economic crisis did not only cause negative results. There are a few positive ones which are based on creation, innovation and reviewing our lives situations. The need to get away from the problems creates many ideas that can ultimately be meaningful and change things. Changes related to our life, art or even productive areas. Young people actually prefer more qualitative artistic behaviors which “raise” our cultural level. Also, there are a few creative “minds” who find innovative ideas for businesses that generate profits and inspire others to dare on business matters. The state's attitude on different subjects has also changed. Maybe not willingly but the events obligated it to do so. The quality of services offered to citizens is better. There is a chance for people willing to try... The assumptions regarding the immediate and longer term future of Greece are many. The most likely, short term one, is the debt to lead the country to suffocation. As a result of this, the most likely long-term outlook is, unfortunately, the selling of all our human and natural resources. The alternative of this version (an option that has to be investigated) is a national development plan. This alternative sounds desirable but seem highly unlikely to happen. The economic policies of the last three decades have brought Greece to the brink of bankruptcy. Reforms implemented in other countries many years earlier have been deferred in Greece. As a result, the country fell far behind, and strike with an unproductive public sector, an unfair and inefficient tax collection system, an unsustainable pension system, and a restrictive and inefficient regulatory framework in the economy, the competitiveness of which is low and steadily decreasing (Vayanos, Vettas & Meghir, 2010). The only positive aspect about the current economic situation in Greece is that there is much room for improvement.