Mitsotakis to Japanese entrepreneurs: Our commitment to make the business activity of every investor easy


Prime Minister’s greeting at a Greek-Japanese business conference in Tokyo

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis attended and spoke at the Greek-Japanese Business Day organized at the offices of the Japanese Foreign Trade Organization JETRO in Tokyo, with the participation of Enterprise Greece. During the event, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Enterprise Greece and JETRO.

The following is the greeting of Kyriakos Mitsotakis (in an unofficial translation from English):

Your Excellency, President of JETRO Mr. Sasaki, dear Vicky Loizou,

Thank you very much for organizing this event. I believe it is extremely important that we use all the opportunities available to us to bring Japanese and Greek companies together in order to explore mutually beneficial opportunities. We organized this trip to Japan primarily because of the importance we attach to strengthening bilateral business relations. As Vicky (Loizou) pointed out, the story of Greece is very fascinating, the story of a country that achieves an impressive page turn.

If you look at where Greece was five or ten years ago, it would be hard to imagine that today Greece would be one of the first fast-growing countries in Europe, one of the countries at the forefront of both green and digital transition. However, this happened. And it happened because our commitment is firm to change the “fabric” of the Greek economy, to make it more outward-looking, more open to the world, to increase our exports as a percentage of GDP, but also to make the country an attractive destination for foreign direct investment investments.

And I believe that today there are many compelling reasons why a Japanese company would consider investing in Greece. It is not only our unique geographical position at the “crossroads” of three continents. It’s not just the fact that we offer access to the world’s largest single market. It is also related to the fact that our government is deeply committed to making the life and business activity of every foreign investor in Greece as easy and seamless as possible.

Our commitment is to achieve tangible results. This was also one of the reasons why we simplified all investor relations activities in the State Department. And I would like, on this occasion, to congratulate Deputy Minister Mr. Fragogianni, Mrs. Vicky Loizou and the entire Enterprise Greece team for organizing this event.

So if you look at Greece you see a country that, in our opinion, offers very interesting investment opportunities across the board, in a multitude of sectors, not only in tourism – of course, Greece and Japan are world-class tourism destinations – but also in sectors such as infrastructure, Renewable Energy Sources, services and in fields related to the green and digital transition.

You will have the opportunity to listen shortly to Minister Pierrakakis describing the importance we attach to the country becoming a digital transformation hub. And I believe we have already made significant progress, with results.

So, I hope that this forum will be an opportunity for Japanese companies and Japanese government agencies to learn more about Greece. But I am also sure that this visit as a whole provided an opportunity for Greek companies to get in touch with Japanese companies and explore mutually beneficial business opportunities.

After all, as governments, we can only act as catalysts for investment. We cannot create these investments alone, we can create the right conditions for Japanese companies to invest in Greece and for Greek companies to increase their footprint in the Japanese market. And I hope that this forum will provide us with the opportunity to do just that.

I wish you success in the meetings and consultations you will have today. I am convinced that this visit will be a game-changer in our bilateral relations with Japan. We had the opportunity yesterday with the Prime Minister of Japan to discuss a wide range of issues, but also to sign a new strategic cooperation agreement that I believe will take our relationship to the next level.

So I wish you success again in your discussions and we hope that we will see more interest from Japanese companies to invest in Greece, but also more interest from Greek companies to penetrate the Japanese markets. After all, we must not forget that Greek shipowners started building their first ships in Japan immediately after World War II. And in their own way, I believe, they also contributed to the impressive success of the Japanese economy.

Again, arigato, thank you very much for your attention.

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