The new British Ambassador to Greece Matthew Lodge and Minister Adonis Georgiadis at the "Back-to-Business Dinner" of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce
Athens, Tuesday, October 19, 2021. Τhe official, well-established "Back-to-Business" Dinner organized for one more year by the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, was held with great success on October 18, 2021.
The event took place at the Hotel Grande Bretagne with Keynote Speaker the new British Ambassador to Greece, Mr Matthew Lodge. It was an opportunity for the Chamber and its Members to welcome the new British Ambassador, with the commitment that the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce will continue to work closely and constructively with the British Embassy and the governments of both countries, to further strengthen the bilateral business relations.
Representatives of the country's political leadership, high-ranking executives of the most important Greek and multinational companies and Members of the BHCC were among the distinguished guests of the evening and in a very pleasant atmosphere exchanged views and met the new British Ambassador.
Minister of Development and Investments, Mr Adonis Georgiadis joined the event as a Guest of Honour.
Ms Anna Kalliani, Greek President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce in her welcome speech highlighted the significant effort of our country to cope with the adverse conditions that emerged from the pandemic and to successfully enter a path of recovery while she also made special reference to the international multilevel challenges that must be addressed.
She referred to the substantial work being made in Greece in the context of changing its economic and business model and creating a more business-friendly environment, with an emphasis on digitalization, innovation, extroversion, ESG criteria, continuity in education to obtain the required skills, but also proper corporate governance and diversity. These factors create the conditions for sustainable growth rates for the Greek economy and contribute significantly to attracting more strategic international investors.
In addition, she pointed out that the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce acts as a communication channel between the business community of the two countries towards the further strengthening of the bilateral relations. She acknowledged the issues that have arisen since the UK's exit from the European Union and the implementation of the new Trade and Cooperation Agreement signed at the end of 2020 and urged all parties to work together to resolve them, but also to formulate a strategic framework which will lead to the maximization of the country’s positive impact and in the strengthening of Greece’s brand name abroad.
The British Ambassador Matthew Lodge, in his keynote speech stated, among other things: I am delighted to join the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce for their “Back to Business” Dinner – especially as it is one of the first in-person events that have taken place since the pandemic. The strong support and optimism of the wide membership of the BHCC gives me great confidence for what we can do together as we work to strengthen the economic, commercial and investment ties between the United Kingdom and Greece. As recently-arrived British Ambassador, I can see lots of exciting potential for developing the relationship between our two countries – a relationship that not only has a long and positive history, but which also offers enormous possibilities for the future. I look forward to working with the BHCC, with the Greek Government and with the business community, to turn those possibilities into realities”.
The British President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, Mr Kenny Evangelou, welcomed the guests and emphasized the opportunities offered in Greece for British businesses and their potential role in Greece’s recovery in various sectors of the economy, either through the provision of goods and services or through direct investments. Sectors such as Energy (renewable sources, infrastructure), Tourism and Real Estate (development of luxury hotels, tourist resorts with residences, new forms of tourism such as wellness, eco, medical), Information and Communication Technologies (start-ups, venture capital, data centers, micro-satellites), Pharmaceuticals and R&D, Logistics, Shipping, and Food and Agricultural Products.
The British President also referred to the new investment and financial opportunities that the Recovery Fund will offer to Greece in the coming years towards a green and digital transition of the economy and urged the Government to continue its reforms to remove obstacles in entrepreneurship as well as the simplification of the tax system so that foreign companies and investors will have the incentives to operate in Greece.
The Minister of Development & Investments, Mr Adonis Georgiadis said among others: "Greece is working towards the further strengthening of Greek-British relations referring to the investment and trade sectors, as it estimates that in the post-Brexit era these can prove to be a win-win situation for both countries".
Emphasizing the traditionally excellent relations between the two countries, Mr A. Georgiadis referred to his recent visit to the UK and the meetings he had with his British counterpart and entrepreneurs and highlighted the important, as he characterized, investment opportunities in Greece today with emphasis on real estate, tourism, research and innovation (development of R & D centers), renewable energy sources, startups, logistics, shipbuilding and industry in general.
At the same time, he reaffirmed the government's commitment to implement reforms that aim towards improving the business environment and expressed his belief that Greece will respond positively to the great challenge of making the best use of the largest development program in its history consisting of the Fund's resources, the new ΕΣΠΑ and resources coming from other European initiatives.
Mr Matthew Lodge, the British Ambassador to Greece, Ms Anna Kalliani, the Greek President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and Mr Kenny Evangelou, the British President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce
The British Ambassador to Greece, Mr Matthew Lodge, Minister of Development and Investments, Mr Adonis Georgiadis, the British President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, Mr Kenny Evangelou and the Greek President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, Ms Anna Kalliani
The British Ambassador to Greece, Mr Matthew Lodge
The Greek President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, Ms Anna Kalliani, and the British President of the British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, Mr Kenny Evangelou
The event was supported by the following companies:
Coca-Cola Tria Epsilon, ENERGEAN, LAMDA DEVELOPMENT (Platinum Sponsors)
Edenred, ETHNIKI INSURANCE COMPANY, GLAXOSMITHKLINE, Vodafone Greece (Gold Sponsors)
ADUS, AS network, Astra Zeneca, BERNITSAS LAW FIRM, Better Future, HSBC Greece, PWC Greece,
RECO EXPORTS, Sunlight, a company of Olympia Group (Supporters)
The British Hellenic Chamber of Commerce warmly thanks Coca-Cola Tria Epsilon for the kind offer of Aperol Spritz and Avantis Estate for their kind support by providing the high-quality tasty wines of the evening.