Greece's economy unexpectedly returned to growth in the period from April to June, with the annual figure up 1.4 percent compared to 2015. Quarter-on-quarter, growth came in at 0.8 percent.
In the first quarter, Greece reported flat growth instead of the 0.2-percent contraction previously announced. It means the country did not slip into recession at the beginning of the year, as previously thought.
Statistics office Elstat did not provide any details on what sectors were driving growth, but economist Nikos Magginas from National Bank told the Reuters news agency that tourism, industrial production and consumption showed "particular resilience."
The Greek economy emerged from a six-year recession in 2014 but shrank again in the final quarter as political upheaval returned.
The potentially detrimental effect of the imposition of capital controls and a three-week shutdown of banks starting on June 29 is not reflected in Thursday's data and could well be a reason for another contraction.
The encouraging data comes as the Greek parliament prepares to vote on whether to approve the 85-billion-euro bailout deal that Greece needs to avoid defaulting on a debt repayment next week.
ng/hg (Reuters, AFP)