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Summary | Profile

Country profile: Greece

Location: Southern Europe, bordering the Aegean Sea, Ionian Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea, between Albania and Turkey
Climate: temperate; mild, wet winters; hot, dry summers
Terrain: mostly mountains with ranges extending into the sea as peninsulas or chains of islands
Size: 131940 sq. km total (Land area: 130800 sq. km  Water area: 1140
Population: 10,722,816 (July 2008 est.)
Languages: Greek 99% (official), other 1% (includes English and French)
Government: parliamentary republic
Capital city: Athens
Legal system: based on codified Roman law; judiciary divided into civil, criminal, and administrative courts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
Currency: euro (EUR)

Country profile

In recent years, Greece has enjoyed strong economic growth and low inflation. In 2005, however, Greece's economy experienced a modest slowdown, with 3.7 percent real GDP growth, down from 4.2 percent in 2004. The contraction occurred following four years of high investment expenditures for the 2004 Olympics as well as high employment and low interest rates. The economy is expected to slow further due to high oil prices and the decline of the Euro against the US dollar, with a projected growth rate of 3.5 percent in 2006.

One of the smallest economies in the European Union (EU), Greece became the twelfth member of the Eurozone in January 2001. The government is undergoing an EU-imposed “excessive-deficit” procedure for misreporting its public finances as far back as 1997. In fact, had the true extent of its fiscal deficit been known, Greece would not have been allowed to adopt the euro in 2002. With its deficit reaching 6.6 percent of GDP in 2004 and 4.6 percent for 2005, Greece remains well above the 3 percent limit for Eurozone members. Although much of the deficit can be attributed to one-time spending in preparation for the 2004 Olympics, the fiscal corrections needed are substantial.

Since the mid-1990s, Greece has undertaken macroeconomic and structural reforms, including measures to reduce the size of the bureaucracy, expand privatization, and attract foreign investment. Both the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) have called for continued efforts in these areas. Although privatization of key utilities and industries has begun, these efforts are limited when compared to other Eurozone members.

Greatly improved relations between Greece and Turkey have allowed for more economic and energy cooperation. In March 2002, Greece and Turkey began discussions to resolve a decades-long disagreement over Aegean Sea boundaries. Greece has endorsed Turkey's bid for EU membership since 1999. Greece, which is a major investor in the former Yugoslavia, is working to integrate its energy infrastructure with the Balkan states. Improved relations with neighboring states could help Greece achieve its goal of becoming a major regional energy hub.

Energy production and consumption

Oil Gas
Production: 5,687 bbl/day (2005 est.) 15 million cu m (2005 est.)
Consumption: 415,700 bbl/day (2005 est.) 2 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Exports: 119,200 bbl/day (2004 est.)  million cu m (2005 est.)
Imports: 550,400 bbl/day (2004 est.) 2 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Reserves: 7 million bbl (1 January 2006 est.) 950 million cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
Major fields:

Greece - recent news

27 Nov 23
Greece: Seatrium delivers Greece’s first FSRU
Seatrium has announced the successful delivery of the Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) Alexandroupolis, which has completed its near shore testing works and set sail to Greece for final gas commissioning of the regasification system.
28 Jul 23
Greece: Enel sells 50% of Enel Green Power Hellas to Macquarie Asset Management
Enel, acting through its fully-owned subsidiary Enel Green Power ('EGP'), has signed an agreement with Macquarie Asset Management for the sale of 50% of Enel Green Power Hellas, EGP’s fully-owned renewable subsidiary in Greece, for a total consideration of approx. 345 million euros.
29 Mar 23
Greece: Nordex Group receives orders for 78 MW in Greece
The Nordex Group has been awarded contracts to supply and install 14 N149/5.X turbines from the Delta4000 series for three projects in Greece. Two wind farms with a total of 10 turbines are to be built in Boeotia in Central Greece, while one wind farm with four turbines is to be installed in Achaia in the north-west of the Peloponnese in western Greece.
21 Feb 23
Greece: HEREMA announces successful completion of 2D geophysical surveys in the blocks 'West' and 'Southwest' of Crete
Hellenic Hydrocarbons and Energy Resources Management Company (HEREMA) has announced the successful completion of the 2D seismic surveys in the offshore areas 'West' and 'Southwest' of Crete. The surveys were carried out by PGS, on behalf of the Licensees ExxonMobil and Helleniq Energy.
07 Aug 22
Greece: ExxonMobil acquires additional equity in exploration acreage offshore Crete following withdrawal of TotalEnergies
Hellenic Petroleum has announced that, following the withdrawal of TotalEnergies, ExxonMobil and Hellenic have increased their equity interest in acreage west and southwest of Crete.

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