Tourism is now the driving force and the most dynamically growing sector of the Greek economy since the participation in GDP is consistently above 15% and at times exceeded 18%. Moreover, it creates employment in a broad range of activities at different levels of knowledge and skill, especially among young people and in our region. Also, we should think that every Euro spent on tourism generates more than twice the secondary consumption in the rest of the economy.
Although tourism has been one of the main pillars of development in Greece for the past 30 years it has many lingering problems:
• 65% of tourism activity in Greece (over-) is concentrated in four areas.
• Under current conditions, the Greek tourism operates almost 80% of its potential.
• Confusion between service and servility sense spirit creates the anti-service syndrome, which possesses substantial part of those directly and indirectly dealing with tourism.
• The primary tourism product in Greece is excellent. However, the added value is not as good. Result, moderate final product, often overpriced, so uncompetitive.
• The disposal of Greek tourism product is made primarily from foreign Tos and distribution channels, which in no way influence.
These lingering problems and poor performance of previous periods, combined with the rise of our competitors and especially with the tourism policy deficit in Greece, confirm the need for active intervention in tourism.
I envision a Greece which, above all, will ensure a high living standard for its citizens, a Greece where all citizens of the world would like to live, either permanently or temporarily. A country which will be pleasant for its permanent residents would be both pleasant and attractive to its visitors as well as temporary residents.
Future tourism must:
- Connect the values and meanings of Greek civilization to modern needs, expectations and perceptions of the globalized society, highlighting Greece at the forefront of the new age.
- Contribute to the improvement of living standards of the inhabitants of Greece through the creation of employment and income.
- Inform and protect tourists-consumers while guaranteeing the right to a quality vacation for all.
- Take environmental protection and management initiatives with the preparation for tackling climate change.
- Establish quality infrastructure across Greece to contribute to balanced regional development.Enhance the prestige of entrepreneurship in society while ensuring the viability and profitability of the business.
- Give glory to the tourism industry and pride to employees.
- Develop synergies with other sectors and the economy, creating and spreading even more benefits in all regions of Greece and larger sections of the population.Increase the competitiveness of Greece through a quality, value for money, world class “greek lifestyle experiences” tourist product.
According to this vision, tourism has got to become the main tool of the Greek government in order to achieve objectives of economic, social and environmental policy.