Elena Panaritis quoted in FT artice “Greece: a marathon to sprint”

Elena Panaritis, institutional economist, social entrepreneur and Greek MP from the ruling Panhellenic Socialist Movement (Pasok) was quoted in the June 29, 2010 article: \”Greece: A marathon to sprint\” (FT article, June 29, 2010), published in the Financial Times.

In response to the severity of the recently voted reform packages and the necessity to re-institute greater competitiveness in the Greek economy while dismantling vested interests and lowering transaction costs, Ms.Panaritis states:

“In the last six months the Greeks grew up by one century. Before that they didn’t understand the word market.”

In particular liberalization of the currently rigid labor market and opening up of the so-called “closed professions” is expected to add around 13.2 percentage points to Greek’s GDP.

But further reforms are needed. One in particular promises to bring an even greater economic impact, and that is the reform addressing the problem of informality and property rights. Greece currently has one of the weakest property rights systems in the West. Denmark, for example, has not been touched at all by the 2008 or 2009 economic crisis and has 0% informality. Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are also among the countries that have consistently had very well established and enforced property rights systems.

Ms. Panaritis’ work in transforming illiquid property markets suggests high social, economic and even gender-equity returns.

This is probably the best opportunity to set Greece onto a new path to prosperity by conducting deep institutional reforms and not to fail its own citizens.

To read the entire article, visit FT.com: \”Greece: A marathon to sprint\” (FT article, June 29, 2010)