Friday, 12 April 2013

Greece's economy

Hello everyone!

When we arrived at the airport, we didn’t have to change our money because Greece entered the Eurozone in 2001.

Before the introduction of the euro, the local currency of Greece was drachma.
1 euro is the same as 340.75 Greek drachma and for 1 pound, you’ll get 400.72 Greek drachma.

In 2010 was Greece the largest producer of cotton and pistachios of the European Union. They produce also a lot of rice, olives, figs, almonds, tomatoes and watermelons. The Greek agriculture produces mainly for export.
Cattle breeding in the Greek economy is only a small part of the GDP. The dry and hot climate and the lack of fertile fields makes cattle breeding very difficult. So for beef and milk is Greece completely dependent on imports.
I didn’t know that the Greeks produce so much wine.
Everywhere in this country, you see fields where they cultivate grapes.



It strikes me that tourism is very important in Greece. When we visited some cities, we were not the only tourists making pictures and looking at some buildings. Especially the little islands are very attractive.
When I looked up some information, I came to know that Greece’s economy is dependent on tourism for 15%. But when I was reading an article on BBC on my laptop, it seemed that visitor numbers are taking off because of the financial crisis.

Actually, this week was a little less fun because on the 3th day of our holiday in Greece, I got a headache and fever. Fortunately, the hotel where we stay had some phone numbers of doctors in the neighbourhood. There are a lot of doctors in Greece but the financial crisis has affected the Greek public services. The hospitals do not have enough resources to examine their patients thoroughly and safely which is terrible I think.
Luckily, after staying 2 days in bed and taking my medication, I could further participate in the meetings and enjoy this beautiful country.

When we were sitting in the bus to visit some important places, I saw that the traffic signs and rules are almost the same as in Belgium. The roads are generally very good, certainly when you compare it with another country like Tunisia or Nigeria.
Greece also has a very important rail network operated by OSE. A lot of people make use of the railway train and so did we. We took the train to go from the airport to the city where our hotel is located. Unfortunately, the financial crisis has curtailed the train service in Greece. There are certain trains who aren’t running anymore so we had to check if the train from the airport to the city was still running before we bought our ticket.

Greece is such a beautiful country but it’s a great pity that it’s so affected by the financial crisis.
Tomorrow, we have to leave for Italy so I’m going to sleep because it’s going to be a long day.
Keep reading!


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