The Eurogroup gave the green light for Greece to exit the enhanced surveillance regime after it expires on August 20, noting that this will restore conditions of normality in Greece for the first time since 2010. Greece must deliver 21 outstanding reforms by November to receive the final tranche of SMP and ANFA bond profits.
The yield on the Greek 10-year benchmark climbed to 4.72% and the spread reached 305 basis points during the week, after increasing by 25% in just 10 days.
ECB President Christine Lagarde presented at the Eurogroup the new mechanism designed to regulate spreads within the eurozone when yields rise too fast or too long. There was no discussion about any conditionality for the countries, including Greece, that will benefit from the new tool.
According to data from Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT), total revenue of businesses in April was up by 31.6% compared to last year, and 27.77% higher than April 2019. Total revenue in April was €27.17 billion, from €20.65 billion in April last year.
State revenues overshot the target by €1.16 billion in May to land at €4.64 billion according to the latest budget execution figures. The primary deficit reached €1.48 billion against a target of €3.9 billion.
The conclusion of pandemic support initiatives and the seasonal effect of the tourism sector pushed up the quarterly unemployment rate to 13.8% in Q1. The unemployment rate stayed at 12.5% in April, while there was also a reduction in the number of employed compared to March.
A study by the EIB shows the Greek economy is among the most vulnerable to the effects of the war in Ukraine. Up to 2.5% of the Greek population are at risk of being pushed below the poverty threshold, while the share of firms reporting losses could increase by as much as 27.7 percentage points as a result of inflation.
The import price index rose in April by 39%, with a 221% jump noted in electricity. This follows a jump of 28.2% of the index in April last year. On a monthly basis the index edged up by 5%, while the rolling 12-month index increased by 27.3%.
Some reduced VAT rates have been extended until the end of the year, giving consumers a small relief. These rates are in the sectors of tourism, transportation, catering and cultural activities that will stay at 13% for the whole of 2022.
Greece dropped from 46th to 47th position in the IMD’s 2022 world competitiveness ranking, with the biggest decline noted in the government efficiency factor.
Seven potential bidders have expressed interest in the €1-billion tender for smart metres, which was put out by PPC and HEDNO/DEDDIE. They include ITRON, Landis+Gyr, Elster, PROTASIS, Iskraemeco, Gridspertise and INTRASOFT International.
The head of U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) told a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the DFC is considering investments in LNG, RES and electricity infrastructure in Greece, as well as in port facilities. The investments are aimed at strengthening Greece’s role as an energy hub in a bid to bolster Europe’s energy security.
Power company PPC has completed the acquisition of e-mobility start-up Garge. PPC plans to use Garge’s mapping app which allows users to locate and reserve e-vehicle charging stations.
IPTO/ADMIE reported net profit of €12 million in Q1, a -25% reduction compared to the same period in 2021, largely attributable to the increased cost of borrowing. Operating revenues were up by 3.5% to €70 million.
The investment decision for the proposed “Argo” FSRU at Volos will be taken before the end of 2022, with the aim of becoming operational in early 2024, according to the CEO of Mediterranean Gas.
Greek shipowners are planning to tackle the decarbonisation challenge by investing in new fuels and technologies, including dual-fuel ships and carbon capture, while several companies are creating in-house “green” R&D units.
GasLog has entered a joint venture with U.S. ship classification society ABS and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering along with engineering partner Bechtel to develop carbon capture and storage infrastructure for LNG carriers.
Airlines have scheduled 3 million seats on flights to Greece for June alone, with industry and government officials expecting up to 25 million arrivals overall, compared to 31 million arrivals in 2019.
Heraklion will be visited by 233 cruise ships this summer of which 23 will be home porting, according to the CEO of the port authority. The port’s master plan includes a new 220-berth marina.
Traffic at Greece’s main ferry ports approached 2019 levels over the June holiday weekend, despite 20-30% increases in the price of tickets. Revenues at one large operator were €5 million above target, however fuel costs were up by €15 million.
According to Bank of Greece (BoG) data, house prices in Athens have increased by 39% over the last four years. In 2021, house prices moved up by 7.4%, and 4.5% in 2020. In the first quarter of the year, the annual rise was 8.6%, slowing down from 9.1% in the last quarter of 2021.
Parliament passed legislation allowing the special administrator of LARCO to make large-scale staff redundancies, in a bid to break the deadlock around the sale of the ferro-nickel producer.
Legislation drafted by the Finance Ministry will classify the redevelopment of the Skaramagas Shipyard, recently acquired by shipowner Giorgos Prokopiou, as a strategic investment, opening the door to fast-track licensing and development incentives.
Despite making gains of 1.24% on Friday, the ASE general index registered weekly losses of -4.31%, closing at 825.41 points. The banking index lost -8.53%, while large caps fell by -4.43%.