President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias on Tuesday received the board of the Panhellenic Association of Exporters, praising Greek exporters as a "shining exception in a dark sky" for their success in raising Greek overall exports.
The association's president Christina Sakellaridis noted that exports had pumped 12 billion euro into the Greek economy, without which the recession would be deeper by at least one percentage point.
She noted that the increase in exports during the first seven months of 2011 had reached 10.7 percent, up from 10 percent for the entire year in 2011.
According to an announcement by the exporters' association of northern Greece (SEBE), exports in the first half of 2011 had broken the 2007 record, having increased by 22.6 percent since that time, and Greece had regained 20th place among the 27 EU member-states in terms of the volume of exports.
The country had slipped in the rankings in recent months due to a galloping increase in sales from Lithuania and Bulgaria.
Based on an analysis of figures generated by Eurostat for the first half of 2011, exports of Greek goods increased 37 percent, as compared with 15.8 percent for European exports as a whole.
The contribution of Greek exports to the 2011 GDP was estimated at 9.6 percent, or three percentage points higher than the same period the previous year.
SEBE noted that industries with export capacity were successfully resisting the crisis but warned that this course could only continue if problems of liquidity - caused by the inability of Greek banks to lend money and an informal freeze on payments by the public sector - were resolved.