Developing a strong conference tourism network and forming metropolitan centers with excellent infrastructure are at the center of the national tourism promotion strategy, Tourism minister Olga Kefalogianni said on Wednesday, during the “Greece: Medical-Conference Destination” event organized by the National Organization of Medicines (EOF).
“Conference tourism will provide Greek tourism with a unique opportunity for growth, contributing to the establishment of a novel tourist product with emphasis on quality and a high standard of service,” the minister said.
Conference tourism accounts for 3-4 percent of the total number of arrivals and 6-7 percent of the total tourist exchange flow, Mrs. Kefalogianni informed. According to the figures, each conference participant is estimated to spend five to seven times more money than a common visitor.
Mrs. Kefalogianni went on to underline that the rate of conference tourism to a country is an indicator of the host country’s security.
“Conferences are not held in countries where there is instability.”
In the direction of medical tourism, Mrs. Kefalogianni referred to ministry actions that have facilitated its growth, primarily the implementation of an EU directive, which foresees the insurance coverage of patients from EU countries.
“The institutional tools and conditions governing medical tourism are in place with a register of providers, certifications and audits,” she said.