By the end of 2009, as a result of a combination of international (financial crisis) and local(uncontrolled spending prior to the October 2009 national elections) factors, the Greek economy faced its most severe crisis after 1993, with the second highest budget deficit (afterIreland) as well as the second highest debt (after Italy) to GDP ratio in the EU. The 2009 budget deficit stood at 13.6% of GDP. This, and rising debt levels (115% of GDP in 2009) lead to rising borrowingcosts, resulting in a severe economic crisis. Greece falsified its financial data to try to cover up the extent of its massive budget deficit in the wake of the global financial crisis.
TheGreek labor force totals 4.9 million, and it is the second most industrious between OECD countries, after South Korea. The Groningen Growth & Development Centre has published a poll revealing thatbetween 1995 and 2005, Greece was the country with the largest work/hour ratio among European nations; Greeks worked an average of 1,900 hours per year, followed by the Spanish (average of 1,800hours/year).
2010 debt crisis
See also: 2010 European sovereign debt crisis
In the first weeks of 2010, there was renewed anxiety about excessive national debt. The CEE Council has argued thatthe predicament some mainland EU countries find themselves in today is the result of a combination of factors, including over-expansion of the eurozone, and a combination of the worst traits ofKeynesian profligacy with rigid monetarist policy, tax evasion,  pursued by local policy makers and complacent EU central bankers.
Some senior German policy makers went as far as to say thatemergency bailouts should bring harsh penalties to EU aid recipients such as Greece. However, such plans have been described as unacceptable infringements on the sovereignty of eurozone member states...