Greece

   

Social Policies

#37
Key Findings
With safety nets strained by crisis, Greece falls into the bottom ranks (rank 37) with regard to social policies. Its score on this measure has improved by 0.5 points relative to 2014.

The country’s education system is heavily skewed toward a tertiary sector that falls far short of reflecting labor-market needs. Spending on pre-primary education is low. The NEET (not in education, employment or training) share among young adults is very high.

The crisis has badly exacerbated poverty and social exclusion. Pensioners receive far more support than do other needy groups. A new social-benefits program has supplemented rent- and electricity-cost subsidies for poor households, but its financing remains insecure. Health care spending has dropped dramatically, but the creation of new local public health care units is likely to improve primary care.

Child poverty rates are high, and family policies underdeveloped. Funded preschool services are rare, and women face serious labor-market disadvantages. As a first entry point for many refugees, the country has been overwhelmed by the recent migrant surge. NGO assistance has helped in the short term, but the issue requires a European-level solution.

Education

#38

To what extent does education policy deliver high-quality, equitable and efficient education and training?

10
 9

Education policy fully achieves the criteria.
 8
 7
 6


Education policy largely achieves the criteria.
 5
 4
 3


Education policy partially achieves the criteria.
 2
 1

Education policy does not achieve the criteria at all.
Education Policy
4
Greece performs better than other southern European countries as far as upper secondary education is concerned. With regard to the proportion of the population having completed tertiary education, the country scores much higher than Portugal and Italy, as well as most eastern and southeastern European countries. The latter achievement is probably due to the fact that in tertiary education in Greece there are no tuition fees for undergraduate studies at the 22 state universities and 14 state polytechnics (Technological Educational Institutes, TEI).

However, the age-old pattern of irrational and patronage-based allocation of education resources persists. The economic crisis has further exacerbated the mismatch between the allocation of resources and actual needs. Thus, during the period under review, divergence between employment and education trends worsened. The country clearly needs, among other specialties, more technicians, sales assistants, skilled and semi-skilled tourism workers, and computer scientists. Yet, the university system produces a very large number of graduates in the humanities, including hundreds of theologians, philologists and theater critics every year. There are also large numbers of physicians who cannot find employment in Greek hospitals nor can they find the financial resources to start their own medical practice. The total number of doctors in Greece (specialized and general practitioners) is approximately 69,000. Among OECD member countries, Greece has the highest ratio of doctors to population (Greece has 6.3 doctors per 1,000 inhabitants while the OECD average is 3.3 doctors per 1,000 inhabitants). As a result, hundreds of Greek physicians, who have been trained for free in respectable Greek state medical schools, emigrate to northern and western European countries, where they practice medicine. The same applies to architects and civil engineers, with engineering schools educating large numbers of students despite an over-abundance of such professionals in Greece.

Access to university education is, however, not equitable as students from middle- and upper-class backgrounds are more likely to successfully pass entrance examinations. Moreover, to the extent their parents can afford it, Greek high school students receive private tutoring to help with high school and the nationwide university entrance examinations. This reflects a cultural contradiction between on the one hand seeing education as an entirely public-sector activity (e.g., university students pay neither tuition fees nor textbook costs, as they obtain textbooks for free) and on the other hand success being dependent on private tutoring.

In fact, the education system is extremely top-heavy, meaning that public resources are channeled to sustaining a large number of state universities and polytechnics, while private resources are used to pay for “cramming schools” which prepare 11th and 12th grade pupils for the nationwide university entrance examinations. It is then no surprise that with regard to expenditure on pre-primary education Greece is ranked among the lowest spenders in the group of OECD countries. The education system is unevenly structured and unevenly resourced, while there is a national fascination only with university entrance examinations. Consequently, all other levels of education are neglected. For example, Greece belongs to the group of lowest performing countries in PISA examinations, which are taken across the world by 15 year olds. In 2016, Greece ranked 43 out of 72 countries in key education categories, lower than in previous years.

The quality of education across Greek universities is very uneven. Some university departments have a long tradition of excellence, such as the Athens Law School and most of the engineering departments of the National Technical University of Athens. The distribution of infrastructure is generally very uneven across university departments, and most universities suffer from the fact that academic and administrative staff are underpaid. However, compared to previous periods, the period under review has seen a visible reduction in the number of strikes and sit-ins organized by student groups. This development is related to the ascent to power of the Syriza party, one of the major forces organizing student mobilizations under previous governments.

In the period under review, the Ministry of Education introduced a number of measures that further reduced the autonomy of higher education institutions. For instance, the ministry announced the merger of some polytechnics with universities and the establishment of a new university created out of the merger of two polytechnics in Western Attica. None of these measures were based on empirical evidence. They were measures flowing from political expediency. In a period of financial constraints, when salary, pension and welfare benefit increases cannot be affected by the incumbent government, a solution to the problem of the government’s declining popularity is the distribution of non-monetary favors to the population. Examples are the symbolic renaming of polytechnics to universities, their “presidents” to “rectors” and the overnight transformation of professors of polytechnics into university professors.

Finally, in the period under review, the Syriza-ANEL coalition government again changed the law on university education. Major policy shifts included tighter supervision of state university and polytechnic financing by the government, stricter regulation of post-graduate programs that severely limit institutional autonomy and the enlargement of selection committees in university departments that are responsible for hiring or promoting faculty members.

As has happened in the past with legislation passed by previous governments, the new university education law regulates the structure and function of universities through numerous detailed regulations. There is no doubt, then, that Greece’s education system is one of the most centralized among OECD countries and that education policy is extremely politicized.

Citations:
Information on the performance of Greece’s educational system is based on data provided on this SGI platform.

Social Inclusion

#37

To what extent does social policy prevent exclusion and decoupling from society?

10
 9

Policies very effectively enable societal inclusion and ensure equal opportunities.
 8
 7
 6


For the most part, policies enable societal inclusion effectively and ensure equal opportunities.
 5
 4
 3


For the most part, policies fail to prevent societal exclusion effectively and ensure equal opportunities.
 2
 1

Policies exacerbate unequal opportunities and exclusion from society.
Social Inclusion Policy
4
Even though Greece is not ranked among the worst-performing OECD countries with regard to income inequality, the income of the poorest part of the population during the crisis years fell relatively more than for the total population. The Gini coefficient rose by 0.3 percentage points per year, while during the same period inequality in the OECD stayed constant on average.

Greece presents a disappointing image regarding poverty and social exclusion, and specifically with respect to social exclusion among younger people. A high proportion of the population are at risk of poverty or social exclusion (35.7%) and only two other EU countries, Bulgaria and Romania, perform worse than Greece on this dimension. Further, with a youth unemployment rate of 43.3% in August 2017, Greece topped all other EU member states (Greece: 43%, EU-28: 16.7%). Moreover, compared to other OECD countries, Greece was among the worst-performing countries regarding the share of 20 to 24 year olds not in education, employment and training (NEET).

Besides the economic crisis, a deeper problem is the long-term exclusion of young people from the labor market, to which they traditionally remain outsiders. Another problem is the permanent tendency of Greek governments to cater to the social needs of old-age pensioners much more than to the needs of any other category of welfare state beneficiaries.

Greece’s policy of social inclusion is haphazard and incommensurate to the problem of social exclusion. Relevant measures include distributing ad hoc social assistance benefits to selected categories of the population, hiring the poor and/or the unemployed in the public sector on short, usually five-month contracts, and counting on the family to fill in the gaps of a still inchoate social policy. Older family members, particularly if they are already retired, are expected to use their pension or other source of income to live on, while also offering food and shelter to socially excluded relatives.

If such an arrangement is not possible and a collective household is socially excluded, then the household can count on welfare state cash transfers. Such transfers have been made by previous governments (the New Democracy-PASOK coalition in 2014) and the incumbent Syriza-ANEL government. After considerable delays and under pressure from the country’s lenders (who since 2010 had advocated for the introduction of a new, universal social safety net), the Greek government piloted a new social allowance program for very low-income groups in 2014. The program resembled a minimum income guarantee, but its implementation was abolished by the new Syriza-ANEL coalition government after the elections of January 2015. The new government had a different plan to address what it considered a “humanitarian crisis” in Greece, which it attributed to the policies of the European Union and the preceding New Democracy-PASOK coalition government (2011 – 2014). In early 2015, the new government offered subsidies to households to pay for rent, cover the cost of electricity and as food aid. Considerable delays in establishing a new social safety net followed in 2015 to 2016. Finally, since early 2017, the Syriza-ANEL government has implemented a new program consisting of a “social income of solidarity” (KEA) to complement existing subsidies for rent and electricity costs for poorer households which the government had legislated in March 2015. The government claims that over 600,000 Greeks benefited from the KEA income supplement in 2017. This is an improvement over all previous programs, but still, owing to the difficult economic situation, the financing of the new scheme is not solidified.

The inefficient use of EU structural funds is a serious issue. For example, the country has failed to use resources from the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) that supports EU countries’ actions to provide material assistance to the most deprived. Complementary measures to fight unemployment (a major cause of rising poverty) like participation in vocational education and training (VET) remain modest.

Citations:
Data on the poverty rate, the GNI coefficient and the NEET share in the age group 20-24 is provided by the SGI data set. Data on youth unemployment for August 2017 is available at https://www.statista.com/statistics/266228/youth-unemployment-rate-in-eu-countries/. And data for percentage share of the population at risk of poverty or social exclusion is provided by Eurostat at http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/People_at_risk_of_poverty_or_social_exclusion. Information on the new social solidarity allowance is drawn on personal notes from public speech delivered by the General Secretary of Social Welfare (an official of the Ministry of Labor) om 25.10.2017 in Athens.

Health

#33

To what extent do health care policies provide high-quality, inclusive and cost-efficient health care?

10
 9

Health care policy achieves the criteria fully.
 8
 7
 6


Health care policy achieves the criteria largely.
 5
 4
 3


Health care policy achieves the criteria partly.
 2
 1

Health care policy does not achieve the criteria at all.
Health Policy
4
Owing to the prolonged economic crisis, there have been massive cuts in public and private health care spending. As OECD data shows, since 2009, per capita spending on public health care has been cut by nearly a third – more than €5 billion between 2009 and 2014. By 2014, public expenditure had fallen to 4.7% of GDP, from a pre-crisis high of 9.9%. This decline in health care spending has been larger for pharmaceuticals and smaller for hospitals. Though shortages of spare parts have meant that scanning machines and other sophisticated diagnostic equipment are increasingly faulty.

The first months of 2017 presented a number of positive developments: the government announced plans to appoint more than 8,000 doctors and nurses, discussions about new legislation on primary health care began, while health care statistics for 2015 indicated a recovery in expenditure. In 2017, the philanthropic Stavros Niarchos Foundation announced a $238 million grant to enhance and upgrade Greece’s public health sector.

Greece is one of the lowest spenders for the share of preventive health measures in total health care expenditure. At the same time, compared to other EU member states, Greece shows one of the largest shares of out-of-pocket household expenditure in total health care expenditure. This highlights three perennial problems affecting Greek health care policy: the lack of long-term planning and programming with regard to preventive health measures, the large volume of unrecorded and untaxed transactions between patients and doctors, and the differential in health care access based on the purchasing power of households.

In addition to these policy-related problems, public health care in Greece also suffers from two key structural problems. First, the long-term irrational distribution of resources, including funds, supplies and personnel, which is defined by a chronic clientelistic logic, rather than rational, that permeates the Ministry of Health’s relationships with regional and local state-run health care services. Second, the fragmented and sprawling character of hospital care. The distribution of the 131 public hospitals across Greece is highly uneven, resulting from a patronage-based selection process that determines where hospitals should be built. Further, there are eight state medical schools in the country, producing hundreds of doctors every year. Yet, at the same time, there is a lack of nurses. Moreover, there is a highly uneven distribution of medical personnel across hospitals, as doctors prefer to work in the hospitals of the two largest cities, Athens and Thessaloniki.

Pharmaceutical spending in Greece has been significantly affected by the crisis (though it had previously reached very high levels in per capita expenditure). The large reductions in drug spending have come as a result of a series of government measures aimed at reducing the price of pharmaceuticals. Some cost reductions have shifted to households, while major budget cuts for public hospitals have left some hospitals without enough medicines and medical supplies. However, pharmaceutical spending (at more than 25% of total health care spending remains among the highest in the OECD).

Nevertheless, there have been some positive government initiatives. The Ministry of Health has issued instructions to state hospitals to provide medicine, tests and treatment to uninsured patients without charge. Indeed, since June 2014, uninsured people have been covered for prescribed pharmaceuticals, emergency department services in public hospitals, as well as for non-emergency hospital care under certain conditions. Moreover, in the period under review, a new law established 75 local public health care units (TOMY). Although there have been many problems in recruiting medical personnel to the TOMY, their establishment was an improvement over the past. If implemented, the new policy measure will shift demand for medical care away from private doctors and public hospitals toward local, primary health structures.

Citations:
Data on per capita spending on health is taken for OECD and is available at https://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/Country-Note-GREECE-OECD-Health-Statistics-2015.pdf

Data on the different types of health expenditure is taken from Eurostat and is available at http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/images/1/1c/Healthcare_expenditure_by_financing_agent%2C_2012_%28%25_of_current_health_expenditure%29_YB15.png

Τhe new law establishing the local heatlh care units (TOMY, Law 4486/2017) around Greece was passed in August 2017.

Families

#39

To what extent do family support policies enable women to combine parenting with participation in the labor market?

10
 9

Family support policies effectively enable women to combine parenting with employment.
 8
 7
 6


Family support policies provide some support for women who want to combine parenting and employment.
 5
 4
 3


Family support policies provide only few opportunities for women who want to combine parenting and employment.
 2
 1

Family support policies force most women to opt for either parenting or employment.
Family Policy
5
Greece has one of the strongest traditions of family ties in Europe. In both urban and rural areas, grandparents often look after preschool children while mothers work, families care for their elderly or disabled at home, parents help around the house and feed the younger generation sometimes even into middle age.

Family policy in Greece is not oriented toward reconciling work and welfare in order to improve the position of women in the labor market. Greece spends very little on preschool services for the age groups 0 to 2 years old and 3 to 5 years old. Consequently, women suffer from a permanent social disadvantage. The Greek state does not have a streamlined policy to reconcile work and family life but heavily depends on the European Union. Around the country, many low-income families benefit from European Social Fund (ESF) projects, which finance many municipal nurseries. During the period under review, ESF-funded municipal nursery places were in high demand, as these places enabled parents to seek work.

The crisis has strengthened age-old cultural patterns. Typically, when a woman has children, she exits the labor market and seeks support from her family in order to raise her children, with some help from her husband. Notably, a new mother employed in the public sector receives much better support than a new mother employed in the private sector or self-employed. Female public employees are guaranteed their jobs following maternity leave. They are also granted maternity leave without fear that, on returning to work, they may be allocated to a subordinate job or suffer a wage cut, as is the case for women employed in the private sector.

Moreover, child poverty in Greece is quite extensive, surpassing 19% of children under 18 years old. Greece is facing acute problems related to child poverty because traditionally the state paid little attention to poverty as a social problem. The bulk of social attention focused on pensioners, often regardless of their income level. However, in early 2017, after a very long preparation period, the government started distributing a benefit called Social Income of Solidarity. This benefit is targeted at low-income groups and resembles a minimum income guarantee found in other EU welfare systems. So there has been some improvement in recent years.

As a result of the crisis, more and more Greek families are relying on their elderly relatives’ pensions. In many cases, relatives cannot afford the expense of a nursing home and decide to take care of their elderly relatives at home. This has led to the mass “emptying” of nursing homes across the country.

Citations:
Data on child poverty, preschool services and fertility rate is provided by the SGI data base.

Pensions

#38

To what extent does pension policy realize goals of poverty prevention, intergenerational equity and fiscal sustainability?

10
 9

Pension policy achieves the objectives fully.
 8
 7
 6


Pension policy achieves the objectives largely.
 5
 4
 3


Pension policy achieves the objectives partly.
 2
 1

Pension policy does not achieve the objectives at all.
Pension Policy
4
The Greek pension system is a pay-as-you-go corporatist system, based on a multitude of occupational pension funds. These funds have recently been merged into a larger, private sector pension scheme, managed by a single state authority (the EFKA). Social spending reached 27% of GDP in 2016 (among the highest level in the EU-28) and the largest share of social protection expenditure is devoted to pensions. In December 2016, the country supported 2.6 million pensioners and more than 1.2 million pensioners lived on less than €500 per month.

The prospects of the Greek pension system are not good, as the country has one of the worst old-age dependency ratios (31) among all OECD countries. Further, nearly one-third of the value of pension funds was lost following 2009 due to surging unemployment and a fall in contributions.

The pay-as-you-go system, according to which the working population contributes to pension funds so that old-age pensioners can obtain their pensions, is unsustainable. Since the start of the economic crisis, pension funds have periodically faced the prospect of bankruptcy, as the number of people who work and contribute to social insurance is shrinking, while the number of pensioners is increasing. Notably, the proportion of people aged 55 to 64 in work in Greece is the lowest of any OECD country, except Turkey.

Moreover, pension policy does not meet intergenerational equity requirements. Existing arrangements primarily serve the interests of middle- and old-age groups at the expense of younger generations of workers. This is a constant pattern running parallel to the periodic trimming of pensions. Owing to the economic crisis and the successive economic adjustment programs, pension policy has not changed direction, despite promises made by Syriza that upon coming to power it would restore pensions to pre-crisis levels. In May 2016, the Syriza-ANEL government passed legislation which increased social insurance contributions and reduced the supplementary pensions for retirees. New pension legislation has cut pension payments by up to 30%, while poor policy design led to 18 legislative amendments in the 18 month period following the initial reform (May 2016 – October 2017).

Overall, however, the thrust of the new legislation continued to protect older generations more than the youth. The legislation’s positive contribution includes the establishment of a nationwide management system and unification of previously fragmented private sector pension schemes, but Greece’s pension system is not sustainable and needs major reform. However, reform is politically extremely difficult, as one in two households rely on pensions to make ends meet. In accordance to the Third Bailout, Greece has legislated new pension cuts, which are due to take effect in 2019.

Citations:
Data on pensions, share of old people who work and old-age dependency ratio is drawn on the SGI data set, available on this platform. Data on pension expenditure is drawn on Eurostat, available at http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Social_protection_statistics_-_pension_expenditure_and_pension_beneficiaries. Information on pension reductions in 2017, after the implementation of the pension law of 2016, is based on press reports available at http://www.kathimerini.gr/923016/article/oikonomia/ellhnikh-oikonomia/meiwmenes-ews-30-oi-synta3eis–me-ton-nomo-katroygkaloy

Integration

#24

How effectively do policies support the integration of migrants into society?

10
 9

Cultural, education and social policies effectively support the integration of migrants into society.
 8
 7
 6


Cultural, education and social policies seek to integrate migrants into society, but have failed to do so effectively.
 5
 4
 3


Cultural, education and social policies do not focus on integrating migrants into society.
 2
 1

Cultural, education and social policies segregate migrant communities from the majority society.
Integration Policy
5
While the integration of past waves of migrants, possibly exceeding one million, had not been accomplished by the beginning of the period under review, the problem of refugees and irregular migrants, crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Turkey to the islands of the Aegean, continued to grow.

The agreement concluded in March 2016 between the European Union and Turkey, which bound Turkey to limit the flow of refugees passing to Greece and on to Europe, was only partially implemented. Turkey complained that it had not received the promised levels of financial aid from the European Union in exchange for its cooperation on this issue. Meanwhile, the European Union clearly distanced itself from the Erdogan regime, particularly after the aborted coup d’état in July 2016 in Turkey.

Refugee camps which had been constructed in 2016 on Greek islands close to Turkey, such as Lesvos, Chios and Samos, quickly overflowed. Financial and other resources devoted to hosting the refugees and personnel rapidly proved inadequate. In the period under review, the number of refugees and irregular migrants entering Greece, after a brief decline, increased again. In the span of one month (October 2017) approximately 3,500 refugees crossed the sea and landed on Greek islands. Port authority officers registered incoming refugees, doctors and nurses of public hospitals offered medical help, and island residents offered food. NGOs continue to provide significant support, as the situation has overwhelmed local Greek authorities. However, this valuable support to desperate people, arriving on Greece’s shores in small boats, does not amount to their integration into education and social life.

The integration of migrants into the education system has been functional in primary and secondary education. However, in the period under review, there was social turmoil in cities around Greece due to the participation of refugee children in social activities outside of the classroom. In a few cases, associations of Greek parents reacted negatively to the enrollment of children with migrant backgrounds in the same schools as their own children.

As for social integration, this was never a strong point of Greek migration policy. With the exception of Albanians, who probably constitute more than half of all migrants in Greece and first came to the country in the early 1990s, the rest of the country’s migrants – including migrants from Asia and Africa – are systematically excluded from Greek society. With regard to cultural integration, it is telling that still there is no official mosque for Muslims in Athens. However, the current government (despite opposition from the junior coalition partner, ANEL) has proven far more willing to liberalize relevant legislation than its predecessor. Law 4332/2015 grants children of foreign nationals the opportunity to gain Greek citizenship as long as they are born and raised in the country.

To sum up, significant problems in terms of policy efficiency remain and policy setbacks are now obvious. Greece still needs to manage the problem of uncontrollable flows of refugees and migrants. This problem has severely strained Greece’s relations with its neighboring countries. It is a problem that obviously cannot be managed individually by the Greek state and will remain unresolved as long as the aforementioned EU-Turkey agreement is not implemented.

Citations:
Data is drawn on Greek press reports on the numbers and social situation of arriving refugees. Τwo sources in Greek:
http://www.kathimerini.gr/931848/article/epikairothta/ellada/kai-pali-prosfyges-se-parka-kai-plateies

http://www.iefimerida.gr/news/372979/mono-ton-oktovrio-eftasan-sta-nisia-3478-prosfyges-kai-metanastes-rekor-afixeon

Safe Living

#33

How effectively does internal security policy protect citizens against security risks?

10
 9

Internal security policy protects citizens against security risks very effectively.
 8
 7
 6


Internal security policy protects citizens against security risks more or less effectively.
 5
 4
 3


Internal security policy does not effectively protect citizens against security risks.
 2
 1

Internal security policy exacerbates the security risks.
Safe Living Conditions
5
Despite the crisis, crime rates declined between 2010 and 2014, and have since remained close to the OECD average. However, in 2015 – 2016, all crimes with the exception of homicides increased by between 10% and 26%. Government expenditure on public order and safety (at 2.1% of the GDP) remained among the highest in the EU-28. Confidence in the Greek police remained comparatively low. This is due to the unwillingness or incapability of the police to control several central residential neighborhoods in large cities where there are daily incidents of petty theft, burglaries and drug use. Police protection for refugees and migrants from attacks by racist groups, including by militants of the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn, continued to be insufficient.

Distrust in police may be explained by the tendency of the incumbent Syriza-ANEL government to tolerate violent protests. In the period under review, there were frequent violent clashes and riots in central Athens organized by anarchist and extra-parliamentary left-wing groups – usually against the police. In almost all cases, the police, which is closely controlled by the government’s Minister of Public Order, did not intervene to protect state and private property, such as university buildings and private stores, unless policemen themselves were physically attacked. There is a general threat from terrorism and acts of political violence. Dramatic events included the attempted attack on the former prime minister, Lucas Papademos, in May 2017 and the storming of the Spanish Embassy in Athens in October 2017.

Citations:
Data on homicides and thefts, as well as trust toward police, is drawn on the SGI statistical data available on this platform.

Global Inequalities

#30

To what extent does the government demonstrate an active and coherent commitment to promoting equal socioeconomic opportunities in developing countries?

10
 9

The government actively and coherently engages in international efforts to promote equal socioeconomic opportunities in developing countries. It frequently demonstrates initiative and responsibility, and acts as an agenda-setter.
 8
 7
 6


The government actively engages in international efforts to promote equal socioeconomic opportunities in developing countries. However, some of its measures or policies lack coherence.
 5
 4
 3


The government shows limited engagement in international efforts to promote equal socioeconomic opportunities in developing countries. Many of its measures or policies lack coherence.
 2
 1

The government does not contribute (and often undermines) efforts to promote equal socioeconomic opportunities in developing countries.
Global Social Policy
5
Until the onset of the economic crisis, Greece used to be active in assisting less developed countries, but later focused on managing its own national social policy problems. Still, under the crisis, Greece participated in all of the European Union’s decision-making efforts related to global social policy. In 2016, Greece’s development aid budget increased by 10.8% as it increased its contributions to the EU development budget. Yet, at 0.14% of GDP, Greek aid is far below the OECD average (0.32%).

Overall, because of the constraints of the ongoing economic crisis, Greece has not helped curb inequalities in developing countries, but has done more than its share to help people who arrive in Europe from developing countries. Even though the reception (refugee camps, and medical and social care) which Greece offers to incoming refugees is far from ideal, it continues to receive and help desperate people landing on Greek territory.

Citations:
http://www.oecd.org/dac/financing-sustainable-development/development-finance-data/ODA-2016-detailed-summary.pdf
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