The economic dimensions of the Marshall Plan in Greece, 1947-1952
This thesis concerns the economic dimensions of the Marshall Plan in Greece from 1947 to 1952. The Marshall Aid Program and Mission contributed to the reconstruction and development of the Greek economy after the destruction of World War II and the Greek Civil War. However, because of the shortcomings of its backward economy, Greece was a special case in the implementation of the Marshall Plan in Europe. In particular, the problems of inefficiency and corruption influenced political and social issues on the decision-making process, while uniquely, the Marshall planners tried to create institutions in order to facilitate reconstruction and to improve Greek people's life. The implementation of the Marshall Plan aimed at the development of the Greek economy parallel to the economic development of the other European countries. The Marshall Plan tried to help the backward Greek economy participate in international trade, and created the foundations for the post-war development of the Greek economy. The principal argument of the thesis is that the Greek economy was too weak to absorb fully the enormous aid granted because private and state investments were too negligible to meet further economic development, while a number of Greek politicians and bourgeoisie prevented the implementation of the economic programme. This forced the American Marshall planners to 'freeze' a great part of the aid in order to cover the budget deficit and to hold inflation. The 'frozen' aid 'counterpart funds' were utilised in the two fiscal years following June 1952. Therefore, in the post-war period, the Marshall Plan was the first systematic effort to stabilise the Greek economy, thereby in due course enabling Greece to join the European Economic Community in 1980.