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Sponsored briefing: Legal trends in Greece

After overcoming a decade-long financial recession, Greece is currently going through a period of political stability and economic growth. During this period, the Greek government has taken a proactive role in charting a determined course for Greece that is friendly to investment, promotes growth and welcomes new business, primarily by enacting legislation that provides considerable incentives to investors.

In particular, during the year 2021, the Greek economy manifested a GDP growth of 8.3% and welcomed an increase of 90.2% in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), in accordance with the data provided by the Hellenic Statistical Authority and Bank of Greece respectively.

As a result, a number of legal sectors that are vital for the implementation of the intended investments are experiencing a significant surge in the Greek legal market, such as M&A, competition law, data and privacy law, real estate law, and energy law.


M&A activity in Greece has maintained a record-breaking spree in 2022, both in volume and in value. Specifically, a total of 94 M&A transactions worth €10.4bn were made in 2022, up from €4.3bn in 2021, with the average value of transactions at €110m. The financial services (26.2%), food/beverage (22.9%), telecoms and technology (17.8%) and energy (10.8%) sectors attracted the biggest interest.

A number of factors, such as the demand for consolidation of activities and optimisation of core operations, especially during the latest geopolitical turbulences and increasing inflation, the modernisation of major Greek corporate legislation during the latest years (eg corporate law, corporate transformations law, General Commercial Registry law etc), the reduction of bureaucracy in the public sector via the extensive implementation of e-governance services, as well as the continuous introduction of tax incentives in investments and corporate reorganisations, indicate that this dynamic will not only remain, but also further increase, in the years to come.

Competition law

The Greek Competition Law, which is primarily governed Law 3959/2011 (the Greek Competition Act), has recently been substantially amended by Law 4886/2022, for the purpose of transposing the ECN+ Directive (Directive 2019/1) into Greek law. The most notable amendment in this regard is the introduction of a possibility for the relevant national authority to impose remedies in Phase I clearance decisions. This has provided the Hellenic Competition Committee (HCC) with the ability to become more agile and prompt in its review of notifiable transactions.

In the last couple of years there has been a record number of decisions issued by the HCC regarding notifiable transactions, due to increased M&A activity, as well as the optimisation of HCC’s operation. As a result, the competition law sector in Greece has had the opportunity to handle a number of complicated transactions and is prepared to stand up to the challenge of the expected continuous rise in activity.

Digital and privacy law

Although a few years have passed since the General Data Protection EU Regulation (EU GDPR) came into effect, drastically changing the digital and privacy law landscape in Europe, the digital and privacy law sector in Greece remains more topical than ever. Investments by the biggest companies in the technological sector have taken place in Greece in latest years (eg, Google, Microsoft etc), while the technology companies already operating in Greece have seen a growth in business as well.

Furthermore, currently, the majority of legal and contractual relationships between businesses, individuals and governments include a massive electronic collection, storage and exchange of data. As technology continues to expand in uncharted territory, such as artificial intelligence (AI), Greek digital and privacy law will need to stay updated in order to keep up with the new challenges. A positive step in this direction was the introduction of Law 4961/2022 for the utilisation of emerging technologies by public bodies and private entities.

Real estate law

Either along with larger scale business investments or even as a standalone investment, real estate accounts for a major part of foreign investment in Greece. A number of factors contribute to its attractiveness, such as relatively low prices in real estate compared to other European countries, a high return in investment due to constantly increasing values, and the location, since a lot of people choose to purchase real estate in Greece not purely as an investment but also as a home of their own, for vacation or even permanent stay. The latter has been further reinforced by government programmes such as the Golden Visa and the Digital Nomad Visa. At the same time, tourism continues to be the driving force of the economy, creating the need for additional investment in real estate, either in the form of short-term lease properties or hotels.

As a result, real estate law in Greece is currently experiencing a significant rise, especially after a period of inactivity throughout the financial crisis. Additionally, the digitisation of the majority of the Cadastre services, the introduction of e-governance services, as well as the newly introduced Electronic ID of the Immovable Property, are effectively reducing unnecessary bureaucracy, facilitating the real estate transfer process in Greece.

Energy law

Greece’s energy sector has always played an important role in its economy, due to the country’s geostrategic position, and is poised to grow significantly in upcoming years. Furthermore, the recent energy crisis has brought the energy sector to the forefront of current affairs and has emphasised the need for extensive use of alternative energy sources and supply lines.

Greece does present ample renewable energy potential (wind, hydro, biomass, geothermal, solar and solar thermal), while at the same time has the ability to become a European gateway for natural gas. The optimisation of energy supply is well underway, requiring a reduction of fossil-fuel generated electricity and an increase of renewable energy, whereas a number of investments have already taken place for the production of wind parks and photovoltaic parks in Greece, in order to meet the above needs.

For more information, please contact:

Julia Pournara, partner

Lia Vitzilaiou, senior manager

Kalliopi Roussou, associate

Platis-Anastassiadis & Associates Law Partnership
8B Chimarras Str., Maroussi,
Athens 15125

T: +30 210 2886 000