A strong production base is a requirement in a new growth and development model for Greece, Government Vice President Yiannis Dragasakis told business owners in Komotini, northern Greece, on Tuesday.

In meetings related to the 6th Regional Growth Conference of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace, which includes addresses by several ministers as well as the prime minister, Dragasakis said that strong production would increase the percentage held by the processing industry in the Greek GDP, raising it from its current 9% (Gross Added Value) to 15% by 2022.

Data provided by local business owners shows that a significant number of businesses invest from 1% to 2% of their turnover to research and innovation, they export a large portion of their production, they use vertical manufacturing, and they have linked their primary production with processing.

Businesspeople on their part spoke of their frustration with infrastructural issues, including rising needs in research and technology, combined transport platforms, production networks, and daily problems such as bureaucracy and time-consuming licensing, along with transportation and energy costs.