Brain drain: More than 1,000 Greeks who left due to the crisis are returning

It is considered particularly successful in the two years of implementation of the provisions for attracting new tax residents and investments in Greece. It is also worth mentioning the fact that 1,000 Greeks, who had left the country in the last decade, under the weight of the crisis, in a huge brain drain have submitted applications to transfer their tax residence to Greece, after the provision tax incentives by the government.

In terms of revenues that have flowed into these public coffers amount to 9.4 million euros, with the final approval of applications of 75 investors and 23 of their relatives from 21 countries, while significant revenues are expected due to the large number of applications for the measure of both retirees foreigners as well as employees and the self-employed.

The above was mentioned by the Minister of Finance Christos Staikouras in his position on the tax incentives for attracting new tax residents and investments in Greece.

More specifically, his statement states the following:

“The Ministry of Finance, under the coordination of the Secretary General of Tax Policy and Public Property Mrs. Athena Kalyva, instituted, with successive legislation, from December 2019 until today, a comprehensive legislative framework to provide tax incentives, aimed at attracting new tax incentives and investments in Greece.

A framework that includes a quadrilateral of interventions, which have already attracted great interest from investors, foreign retirees and employees, yielding significant revenues for public funds and multiple benefits for our country.


1st The beginning was made with Law 4646/2019, which introduced in Greece the institution of “non-resident resident” (Non-Dom), to attract tax residents abroad – investors, who, by transferring their tax residence in Greece and making significant investments in our country, benefit – for a period of up to 15 years – from alternative taxation of income of foreign origin.

2nd Subsequently, Law 4714/2020 extended the alternative income taxation to foreign retirees, who transfer their tax residence to our country, by applying a rate of 7% for income of foreign origin.

3rd In addition, Law 4758/2020 established tax incentives to attract foreign workers and the self-employed, but also Greeks who left the country during the financial crisis, to move their tax residence and work professionally in Greece.

Specifically, for the aforementioned categories of natural persons – employees or self-employed – a 50% exemption from income tax and the special solidarity contribution was introduced, for a period of up to 7 years, provided that a new employee is employed or starts a new activity.

This is a measure that contributes significantly to the effort of brain gain, ie the return to our homeland from abroad human resources with a high level of knowledge, professional skills and abilities.

4ον. The “quartet” of interventions was completed last February, with Law 4778/2021, which established clear and transparent rules for the establishment and operation of companies for the purpose of managing family property (Family Offices), taking into account international best tax practices.

A framework that will be fully implemented in the near future, with the issuance of the Joint Ministerial Decision on the services that Family Offices can – as an indication – provide.

Although the implementation of the tax incentive framework for attracting new tax residents and investments in Greece started under extremely unfavorable conditions, due to the health crisis, its immediate effectiveness is already reflected in the data of the General Secretariat of Tax Policy and Public will be presented in more detail below.

In summary, in the 2 years of implementation of the provisions for the attraction of new tax residents and investments in Greece, total revenues of 9.4 million euros have flowed into the public coffers, with final approval of applications of 75 investors and 23 relatives from 21 countries, while expected significant income due to the large number of applications for the measure for both foreign retirees and employees and the self-employed.

The indirect multiplier benefits for our country are also important, such as strengthening the economy, stimulating investments and boosting employment.

In particular, regarding the alternative taxation of foreign pensioners, 157 applications have been approved from 21 countries, 13 of which are from the European Union, while regarding the inclusion in the special taxation of employees or self-employed, the process started this year and have already been submitted. about 1,000 applications.

The above proves that taxation is an extremely useful tool for achieving growth and investment goals, in addition to securing public revenues.

Therefore, tax systems must keep pace with rapid economic and social change.

The Ministry of Finance is in line with this need.

According to the data for the first period of implementation of the new provisions, despite the unfavorable situation of the pandemic, the impact of the new tax incentives is extremely encouraging.

Greece, moving forward with a plan, vision and confidence, is recovering strongly from the health crisis, is growing and is open to attracting investment and human capital.

In this way, we create the appropriate conditions for the creation of many and good new jobs, for the provision of opportunities to the Greeks, the young men and women, who are in our homeland or will return to it “.