What happened to Greece

All news and information from the F.A.Z. on the subject

Greece is located in the south-east of Europe and is a member of the European Union. For Central Europeans, Greece is a popular holiday destination with its Mediterranean climate, numerous islands and, in some cases, very well-preserved ancient sights. Tourism is one of the country's main sources of income.

The history of Greece
In ancient times, Greece was considered the "cradle of Europe", from which great achievements such as democracy, early mathematics and astronomy, philosophy and the first medical teachings emerged. The Olympic Games also had their origins in Greece, and it was Greek authors like Homer who wrote the first great literary works in Europe. In the Middle Ages, Greece was part of the Byzantine and later the Ottoman Empire for a long time before the first independent Greek state was founded in 1830. Further provinces and islands were added successively until 1913. Today's national borders were established in the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923. After the collapse of the military dictatorship in 1974, Greece developed into a modern democracy and joined the EU in 1981.

The Greek crisis
Greece's accession to the euro in 2000, extensive infrastructure measures funded by the EU and high administrative costs combined with disproportionately low tax revenues led to enormous foreign debt, which only became public in 2009 in the wake of the international economic crisis. The financial crisis that followed caused unemployment to rise dramatically while the domestic market collapsed. Gradually, the economic climate in Greece is showing the first signs of improvement.