In the 30 years before Greece entered the European Community (EC), the real per capita income of Greece, measured in constant euros of 2010, rose fivefold from €2.9 thousand  in 1950, to €14.5 thousand in 1980. The average annual growth rate was 5.5%.

In the subsequent 30 years, after Greece had become a member of the European Community and the European Union, the real per capita income of Greece rose by only 1.4 times. From the €14.5 thousand in 1980, to €20.3 thousand in 2010. The average annual growth rate fell to 1.1%, one fifth of the growth rate before EC accession.

Similar trends can be detected in other related measures, such as per capita private consumption or average labor productivity.

These comparisons refer to economic growth before the 2010 crisis. After the recent crisis, real GDP per capita fell to €17.1 thousand in 2016, a decline of 25% relative to its peak level in 2007.

These trends are depicted in the attached chart.

 

 

An extract from George Alogoskoufis, Greece and the Euro: A Reality Check, unpublished paper, Fletcher School, Tufts University, December 2018.