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Mykonos is quiet, for now. Photo: Athanasios Gioumpasis/Getty Images

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis makes it sound pretty simple.

What he's saying: Asked this week how his country had avoided a major COVID-19 outbreak, he said: "It was obvious to me after talking to our public health experts that we would be moving into some sort of lockdown. I chose to do it earlier rather than later."

  • Mitsotakis also noted that he’d taken a backseat to the nation's chief epidemiologist, who held nightly press conferences and issued guidance closely followed by a population that had previously shown little trust in government or expertise.

The good news: "Social trust is very important," Mitsotakis said. "We had lost it in Greece for many years, and this pandemic was an opportunity out of the blue to recover it."

The bad news: "One risk I see is to be a victim of our own success,” Mitsotakis said, noting that people were growing more “complacent.”

  • Another risk is his decision to reopen for tourism (which accounts for 20% of the Greek economy) beginning July 1.
  • Tourists from countries with well-contained outbreaks will be invited first. Americans will have to wait a while longer.

What to watch: Mitsotakis said he believed countries like his that adopted lockdowns early, despite the economic pain, would ultimately recover faster economically than those who waited until their outbreaks had grown more severe.

Go deeper... Paradise and the pandemic: The outlook for summer travel

Go deeper

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Pfizer CEO feels "liberated" after taking COVID vaccine

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. Photo: "Axios on HBO"

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla tells "Axios on HBO" that he recently received his first of two doses of the company's coronavirus vaccine.

Why it matters: Bourla told CNBC in December that company polling found that one of the most effective ways to increase confidence in the vaccine was to have the CEO take it.

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Ripple CEO: SEC lawsuit is "bad for crypto" in the U.S.

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse tells "Axios on HBO" that if his company loses a lawsuit brought by U.S. regulators, it would put the country at a competitive disadvantage when it comes to cryptocurrencies.

Between the lines: The SEC in December sued Ripple, and Garlinghouse personally, for allegedly selling over $1.3 billion in unregistered securities. Ripple's response is that its cryptocurrency, called XRP, didn't require registration because it's an asset rather than a security.

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Pfizer CEO: "It will be terrible" if COVID-19 vaccine prices limit access

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told "Axios on HBO" that it "will be terrible for society" if the price of coronavirus vaccines ever prohibits some people from taking them.

Why it matters: Widespread uptake of the vaccine — which might require annual booster shots — will reduce the risk of the virus continuing to spread and mutate, but it's unclear who will pay for future shots or how much they'll cost.