Greek Chemical Industry Suffers Major Setbacks
time to upgrade concept on blackboard background
Major Chemical Company Revamps
July 30, 2015
Is the USA Behind the 8-Ball on Chemical Industry Safety?
August 16, 2015
Greek Chemistry

Greece has been dominating global financial news headlines for months, and the economic turmoil that characterizes this southern European nation has put it at odds with the Eurozone. That Greece is heavily in debt, with further austerity measures being endorsed by the 300-member Greek parliament, is testament to the collective bargaining strength of the European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Greece flag
The chemical industry makes up just 5% of the manufacturing sector in Greece, but it is responsible for the employment of over 17,000 workers. The chemicals sector in Greece generates annual turnovers of €2 billion, but since most businesses are not producers of the raw chemicals, the national industry is made up of consumers. Greece presently exports up to 15% of the chemicals it produces.

With the economic upheaval that has hit the country, it is the smaller chemical companies that are struggling. Adapting to new economic realities is proving difficult to an industry that relies on substantial international and domestic investment. Demand suffered in 2014 and there was no sign of a recovery in the works. Banking regulations have further stifled demand domestically and cut export potential too.

Greece Trailing Europe in Chemical Industry Productivity

Among the many concerns for workers in the Greek chemicals industry are safety worries and long hours. Now that certain sectors have been excluded as heavy/unhealthy, many chemical industry workers are being required to work an additional 5 years before retirement for pension purposes. Since so many companies shuttered at the height of the financial crisis, and in its aftermath, many people lost their jobs. Widespread malfeasance and corruption ensued, with bank loans being used for personal purposes instead of saving, and faltering chemical companies.

Now there are initiatives to increase exports in order to boost turnover on a multinational level. The continuation of euro usage will be a big boon to the Greek chemicals industry, but rocky roads lie ahead as the debt to GDP ratio remains untenable for the country. Based on future projections, there is likely to be a downward movement for the Greek chemicals industry. For the European chemicals industry however, the outlook is likely to be more bullish.

4/5 - (1 vote)


  1. Emmie sayers says:

    This is an interesting article, thanks. The capital controls that have been imposed most certainly is affecting a broad range of businesses in Greece. As soon as these are lifted, companies will have a fair chance to get back on track. Greece exports 15% of their chemicals they product, that is not bad percentage. Would do them good to get that higher!

  2. Judy Workman says:

    With Greece being heavily in debt and their chemical industry going downhill, things look bad for them. I hope they find a way to recover. It’s got to be hard on the workers having to work an extra 5 years before retirement. With initiatives to increase exports in order to boost turnover they will probably recover slowly.

  3. Matt Loveday says:

    Good Article, a very interesting read. It seems like Greece is in a spiral of debt which they can’t break out of. It’s interesting to see how all of their separate industries are affected and I never actually considered things like the chemical industry with the long hours and dangerous working conditions created by the governments debts. Good Job!

  4. Wirhan says:

    This article pretty much explains what caused financial crisis in Greece. In my opinion, it would be a good idea if raw chemicals can also be manufactured within the country. That will certainly help the smaller companies, which probably do not have enough financial power to import the raw chemicals required for their business.

  5. Ryan Thomas Koch says:

    I appreciate pointing out the safety concerns in Greece. This is incredibly true that as there is a rush to become more productive and rush to improve economically that they need to be mindul to do it safely.

  6. Richard Harris says:

    Much of Greece is suffering at the moment. Beautiful country will certainly recover.