ATHENS – Greece’s hopes of attracting more valued and qualified digital nomads to work and live in the country – even by offering tax incentives – are not enough to make up for what they need most, especially a fast internet and reliable.
In an article, Business Daily reported that the country is in the 100th place in the world with an average speed of 36.42 megabits per second (Mbps) and is behind Turkey, North Macedonia, Albania, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia and even Kyrgyzstan and Ghana.
The report also states that social inequality is a deterrent for people with technical skills, even though the cost of living, especially for housing, is much lower than in most countries, especially the key market for people. United States.
It is not just foreigners that the New Democracy government is trying to attract, but the vast legions of young and talented people who fled Greece during an economic and austerity crisis that lasted for nearly a decade, also blocked by a system that favored political contacts and patronage, not merit. or entrepreneurship.
Some 60% of Greeks abroad would like to return if they could work as digital nomads, according to the article, noting that the Nestpick and nomadlist sites said the country was not taking advantage of its attractions, including cheap rents. and entertainment.
Nestpick said that Athens is the 20th cheapest city for renting commercial premises and the 24th cheapest for an apartment and 11th cheapest in terms of cost of living, while it is 19th for entertainment.
But rivals where security, freedom and combat are better viewed include Hungary – which has an authoritarian government – Turkey, where human rights are violated, and the United Arab Emirates and Dubai.
Skilled and educated young people also take into account factors that are not directly related to their work, including gender equality where Greece only ranks 64th, with the nomadic list showing a poor record in terms of racial tolerance and towards the LGBT + community.
But the biggest hurdle remains what digital nomads need most: clicking sites on their computers and other devices and getting fast, reliable connections, because the internet is slow and often interrupted.
In the Nestpick ranking, Athens ranks 65th in terms of overall internet performance and capacity, while in the analysis of the nomads list, the average internet speed is said to be 12 Mbps.
Romania, which has a reputation for being skilled hackers, is the third fastest in the world and Greece ranks far behind most countries in the European Union as the government has said it will try to improve technology.
For mobile phones, the Internet works better, Greece ranking 25th at 73.36 Mpbs in a note from the Ookla site, but losing five places compared to the 2020 list. The first places are the United Arab Emirates, South Korea and Qatar.
The government has said it will grant work visas to digital nomads for one year, which can be extended to two years, but only if they have never worked in Greece before and do not work for a Greek-based company. in Greece during their stay, only for foreign companies.
They can bring in family members who will not be allowed to work but who could also get a visa that expires at the same time, although it has not been said if this includes a partner who is also qualified as a digital nomad. that would otherwise qualify.