Greece Remains in the Eurozone, Germany an Unexpected Beneficiary

Marine Technical Experts Survived and Prospered in the Greek Ship Repair and Inspection Business by Providing Superior Customer Service and Embracing Innovation

Remarkable prosperity in the middle of severe economic headwinds.

© copy RM / Dave G
Marine Technical Experts (MTE), located near Athens, offers clients in Greece integrated solutions in the field of marine services, such as ship repairs, with high quality, efficiency, rapidity and reliability. The ISO 9001:2008 certified firm is available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year and on short notice to provide high level technical services required by their clients. MTE has been selected to receive the BID Quality Crown Award for 2015.

Expansion in an increasingly competitive global marketplace is tough, but doing it in the context of the recent economic crisis, and in particular in view of the difficulties experienced by the Greek economy, is remarkable.

Reports of the demise of the Greek economy have been greatly exaggerated.

In February, 2015 Alan Greenspan said Greece would leave the euro and that the common currency would collapse. In March, George Soros said that helping Greece financially was a “lose-lose game” and that the odds of Greece leaving the eurozone were 50/50. The result was that investment in Greek debt was considered so risky that rates on its bonds went as high as 19%. Today they are about half that amount.

But there is another important side effect of the large fluctuation in Greek bond prices. A recent study performed by a team at the University of Halle has concluded that over the past five years, the German government has saved approximately 100,000,000,000 € in interest on its own debt because of the financial turmoil in the south. What this means is that even if the Greeks default on their entire debt, the Germans will come out ahead.

The fact that markets are responding more favorably to the Greek debt crisis now than they were during the summer does not mean that the trouble is over. Recently, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras followed Pope Francis to the United States, seeking an infusion of cash that will help Greece emerge from the austerity measures imposed upon it without quite so much pain. In a speech to the United Nations discussing the role of debt relief in worldwide financial systems, Tsipras did not miss the opportunity to point out that Germany benefited from large scale debt relief in 1953.

Moving Forward 

Although the economic news from Greece has been such that some observers and investors feel that they have been on a fiscal roller coaster, one company just outside the Greek capital has been a beacon of stability, and has even prospered.

Mechanical Services

In the area of engine repair, Marine Technical Experts has on staff personnel capable of repairing electrical, two-stroke and four-stroke engines of any type. Clients hire Marine Technical Experts because they are well known for such diverse tasks as diesel generator overhauling, main engine overhauling, steam turbines, engine machinery and deck machinery, using technicians who have been factory certified by such companies as M.A.N, B and W, Wartsila, Daihatsu and Yanmar. The staff is large enough so that customers can be sure that a technician with experience on their particular piece of equipment will be doing the job. And when inspections are needed, MTE engineers travel throughout the world.

MTE also makes its expertise available for any hull type, such as bulk carriers, tankers, OO-ore/oil carriers, OBO-ore/bulk/oil carriers, tweendeckers, reefers, roll on roll off vessels, pure car and pure car/truck carriers, container ships, liquefied natural gas carriers, liquefied petroleum gas carriers, passenger and cruise vessels and yachts.

MTE understands that any Total Quality Improvement program requires documentation and written standards. Therefore, customers can expect MTE technicians to follow checklists during their work and produce Analytical Service Reports and photos after each service procedure.

© copy RM / Dave G

Ultrasonic Testing

One particular area of expertise found at MTE is Ultrasonic Thickness Measurement. The staff uses well-experienced Level II operators active in the field of ultrasonic testing who have many years of practical experience and theoretical training. Many staff members boast Greek and international university degrees, and all of them take frequent recurrent training to ensure they are always up to date with the latest requirements in their fields. The thorough preparation of the staff is so well respected that MTE is approved by all major Classification societies of the world, and are capable of meeting the requirements of any Classification survey on any type of vessel.

MTE also applies ultrasonic technology to its testing of welding seams, the most reliable method available to verify the soundness of such procedures. Scheduled inspections of welding seams allow for preventive maintenance, thus safeguarding the lifecycle of metal structures and their safe, accident-free operation.

In addition to repairs and engineering work, MTE provides its clients with inspection and testing in a wide array of applications. For instance, MTE incorporates a full range of inspections for lifeboats and launching appliances extending from annual to 5-year inspections and load tests. The company also performs load testing for cranes, mooring winches and derricks, and have cutting edge equipment available capable of evaluating cranes of various types with working loads exceeding 50 MT.

Hatch Cover Leak Detection

Research by MTE engineers has alerted them to the fact that the weathertightness of Cargo Hatch Covers is growing into one of the major safety factors which is frequently neglected by ship’s staff. This in spite of the fact that such failure is associated with a chain of events which may potentially compromise the integrity of the vessel and its cargo. Marine Technical Experts is equipped with hatch leak detection equipment capable of verifying the performance of a vessel’s Cargo Hatch Cover. MTE personnel are available to perform this vital work and effect remedial action when indicated.

Systems Inspections

Seagoing vessels are complex, and their systems are varied. MTE technicians make it easy for clients to be sure that all systems required for safe and efficient operations are working as they should, such as engine room alarm and monitoring systems; oil water separators; automated boiler controls; main engine telegraphs and cargo tank level gauges; maneuvering systems; main and auxiliary engine safety devices; and all onboard gas controllers, detectors and monitors.

The BID committee was particularly impressed by the company’s ability to prosper during very tough times in Greece while at the same time being recognized along several criteria of quality. Because of its commitment to continuous quality improvement and customer service, MTE has been selected to receive the BID Quality Crown Award for 2015 at the convention in London.


BID is a private and independent organization founded in 1984, whose primary activity is business communication orientated towards quality, excellence and innovation in management. A leader in the broadcasting of Quality Culture, BID recognizes those companies and organizations which lead the most important activities in the business world, and is considered the founding organization in the broadcasting of the Culture of Quality, Excellence and Innovation in 179 countries. The trophy symbolizes a pledge to the principles of Quality Culture. The QC100 Total Quality Management Model, together with the Quality Mix program, media coverage of the convention and its impact on the community and business sector, create an unmatched platform for continuous improvement within the organization and awareness of the achievements of the company at an international level. Awards are given only to those who are committed to improving their Quality Culture based on the principles of the QC100 Total Quality Management Model. Candidates are proposed by the leaders of previously awarded companies who they consider worthy of the award. Especially meritorious candidates may also be nominated. The International BID Quality Award Selection Committee then chooses the winning companies who will receive the award in New York, Paris, Geneva, Frankfurt, Madrid and London.