I take your point
but maybe you are not comparing like for like?
Greece has 11m people, japan has 120m
Greece has a long tradition of shipping and transport, but little else apart from agriculture. They also have a benign climate an an attitude to life we might all envy
They thought joining the EU was a gravy train they might as well get on; they were ill advised.
The Japanese on the other hand, are workaholics, with great skills and collective determination. More like an ant mentality I think
Their working skills brought in ‘energy’ in the form of raw materials. (which was produced eleswhere) which they turned into profit by reworking it into desirable goods that the world wanted. So they were able to export energy as ‘goods’ and expertise. That is what they are good at. That is why they didn’t need fossil fuels. But it also tells you why they attacked the USA in 1941 — -to grab oil resources to keep their war production machine going.
After WW2 they were forced to try a different way.
Singapore is doing much the same thing.
they willingly accepted a regimented dedicated lifestyle that the Greeks would not. Generally, we would not envy Japanese lifestyle.
japan and singapore can only continue so long as sufficient cheap fossil fuels are available elsewhere to keep their economic pumps primed.
That model could not work if all other nations tried to follow it on the same basis. It will cease to function as oil supplies dry up.
It isn’t possible to make TVs and cars from the output of windfarms and solar panels.