Bold Predictions for 2024: Dr. Axarloglou Discusses Greek Economy at The Economist Event

Thursday, 25/01/2024

In an engaging and insightful panel discussion at The Economist's World Ahead 2024 Gala Dinner held at the prestigious Hotel Grande Bretagne on January 22nd, 2024, Dr. Kostas Axarloglou, Dean and professor of international business and strategy, shared his bold predictions and reflections on the trajectory of the Greek economy in 2024.


The event, hosted by The Economist Events for Greece, Cyprus, Malta, and south-eastern Europe, brought together luminaries who presented candid and entertaining forecasts for the year ahead. Dr. Axarloglou participated in a comprehensive conversation on "The Greek Economy, Growth and Competitiveness in 2024" alongside Kostis Hatzidakis, the Minister of National Economy and Finance for Greece and  Tom Standage, editor of The World Ahead 2024.

During the discussion, Dr. Axarloglou highlighted the commendable progress made by the Greek economy, citing robust GDP growth, a significant reduction in unemployment, and a remarkable increase in exports from 19% in 2009 to an impressive 49% in 2023. He credited this success to strategic vision, effective administration, and collective efforts from business leaders.

While acknowledging these achievements, Dr. Axarloglou emphasized the challenges that lie ahead, advocating for increased investment in extrovert sectors, improved infrastructure, and the nurturing of human capital for inclusive growth. He likened the ongoing economic restructuring to a plane ascending while undergoing engine re-engineering, showcasing the resilience of the Greek economy despite challenges in export fluctuations and bottlenecks in certain sectors: “Analogous to a plane ascending while simultaneously undergoing engine re-engineering, the economy is undergoing a monumental transformation. In 2009, only 20% of the Greek GDP was exports; fast forward to 2023, and this figure has surged to 50%, indicative of a fundamentally altered economic landscape.”

Responding to queries about what measures can be implemented to ensure sustained growth via investment and spending, Dr. Axarloglou stressed the importance of businesses bridging the investment gap, currently at 12% of GDP compared to the optimal 20%. He stated that foreign direct investment is a key catalyst and proposed strategic investments aligned with the outward-looking economic landscape to ensure sustained growth: “To drill down into the mechanics of sustainable growth, it becomes imperative to scrutinize the strategic industries that serve as growth catalysts. Transformative industries, as exemplified by energy, green initiatives, recycled economy, and digital transformation, are pivotal in driving sustainable growth. These sectors not only represent the next frontier but also attract significant investments.”

Dr. Axarloglou wrapped up by advocating for leveraging funds like the Recovery and Resilience Facility to support Greece's transformative journey towards an outward-looking and innovative economy. He noted that the fund furnishes considerable resources to be directed towards vital sectors such as energy, green initiatives, recycled economy, digital transformation and more.

The overall projections conveyed by the panelists for the Greek economy is a commitment to inclusive development, focusing on prosperity that includes the majority. Their insights collectively pave the way for a promising bright future in Greece marked by positive economic and technological advancement, governmental planning, and business innovation. The Greek economy is making significant strides toward becoming an outward-looking and innovative force in the global economic landscape. Although challenges may lay ahead, the panelists point toward a dynamic and promising future for the Greek economy, grounded in infrastructure improvements, innovation, strategic investments, and inclusivity.

You can watch the panel discussion in full below:

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