Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg

Greece Reaps Benefits From This Underground Pipe

At a time when Greece is desperately trying to attract foreign direct investment, a pipeline bringing gas from Azerbaijan to Europe shows just what a difference such deals can make.

Basic metals production has been the star of a modest manufacturing upturn in 2017, growing more than 21 percent, according to industrial production data released Tuesday covering the January-November period. Behind the surge is demand for pipes from the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline, an 878-kilometer (546-mile) project under construction since 2016.

Piping Hot

Demand from the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline drove a surge in Greek metal production in 2017

Source: Hellenic Statistical Authority

The pipeline shows how individual projects can make an impact on the macroeconomic statistics in a country like Greece. But the country needs to turn on the tap for more if it is to bump up total investment, which grew just 2.6 percent in the first nine months of last year.

Read more: Greece’s 10-Step Road Map to Bailout Program Exit in August

This year will be a critical one for the economy which, having stabilized after shrinking by a quarter, now needs to achieve more rapid growth to lower the unemployment rate, the highest in the euro area. There are some encouraging signs, with a gauge of manufacturing, which comprises close to 10 percent of the economy, rising to its highest since 2008 last month.

— With assistance by Mark Evans

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