Passage Eight (The Improving Economic Situation In Greece)
Greece, economically, is in the black. With very little to export other than such farm products as tobacco, cotton and fruit, the country earns enough from ‘invisible earnings’ to pay for its needed, growing imports. From the sending out of things the Greeks, earn only $285 million; from tourism, shipping and the remittances of Greeks abroad, the country takes in an additional #375 million and this washes out the almost $400 million by which imports exceed exports.
It has a balanced budget. Although more than one drachma out of four goes for defense, the government ended a recent year with a slight surplus -- $66 million. Greece has a decent reserve of almost a third of a billion dollars in gold and foreign exchange. It has a government not dependent on coalescing incompatible parties to obtain parliamentary majorities.
In thus summarizing a few happy highlights, I don’t mean to minimize the vast extent of Greece’s problems. It is the poorest country by a wide margin in Free Europe, and poverty is widespread. At best an annual income of $60 to $70 is the lot of many a peasant, and substantial unemployment plagues the countryside, cities, and towns of Greece. There are few natural resources on which to build any substantial industrial base. Some years ago I wrote here:
“Greek statesmanship will have to create an atmosphere in which home and foreign savings will willingly seek investment opportunities in the back ward economy of Greece. So far, most American and other foreign attempt have bogged down in the Greek government’s red tape and shrewdness about small points.”
Great strides have been made. As far back as 1956, expanding tourism seemed a logical way to bring needed foreign currencies and additional jobs to Greece. At that time I talked with the Hilton Hotel people, who had been examining hotel possibilities, and to the Greek government division responsible for this area of the economy. They were hopelessly deadlocked in almost total differences of opinion and outlook.
Today most of the incredibly varied, beautiful, historical sights of Greece have new, if in many cases modest, tourist facilities. Tourism itself has jumped from approximately $31 million to over $90 million. There is both a magnificent new Hilton Hotel in Athens and a completely modernized, greatly expanded Grande Bretagne, as well as other first-rate new hotels. And the advent of jets has made Athens as accessible as Paris or Rome – without the sky-high prices of traffic-choked streets of either.
1. The title below that best expresses the ideas of this passage is
[A] Greek income and expenditures.
[B] The improving economic situation in Greece.
[C] The value of tourism.
[D] Military expenditures.
2. Many peasants earn less than
[A] $60 a week.
[B] $2 a week.
[C] $1 a day.
[D] $10 a month.
3. The Greek Government spends
[A] more than 25%of its budget on military terms.
[B] More than its collects.
[C] A third of a billion dollars in gold.
[D] Less than 25% of its budget on military terms.
4. According to the passage, Greece has
[A] a dictatorship.
[B] a monarchy.
[C] a single majority party.
[D] too much red tape.
5. Greece imports annually goods and materials
[A] totaling almost $700 million.
[B] that balance exports.
[C] that are paid by tourists.
[D] costing $66 million.
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