Friday, July 13, 2012

Red Tape Still Investment Problem in Greece

Associated Press/New York Times
July 13, 2012

Greece has too much red tape to encourage business investment and the country's new coalition government should tackle the problem "immediately," Europe's regional policy commissioner said Friday.

Johannes Hahn called for the simplification of investment procedures, and a clarification of responsibilities within all levels of government.

"There must be a simplification, not only in terms of procedures, but also in terms of responsibilities within the ministries," Hahn said. "From my perspective the biggest obstacle is, let me say, confusion of responsibilities, which by the way is one of the reasons why foreign investors hesitate. And I think this should be tackled by the new government immediately."

Other bureaucratic obstacles to foreign investment include uncertainty over how to obtain permits, convoluted tax systems and the slow pace of court cases, which can often take years to be resolved.

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