Funds of 120 million euros from a NSRF (National Strategic Reference Framework) 2014-2020 program for the creation of new small and medium-sized tourism enterprises in Greece, will be available as of this September, according to Greek Secretary General for Tourism Policy and Development, Yiorgos Tziallas.
Speaking on Saturday at the 5th Development Conference for Western Greece in Patra, Tziallas said a wide range of businesses could benefit from the new program, while entrepreneurs that join can receive up to 50,000 euros in advance.
“Our vision is to make our country a world-wide tourist destination 365 days a year,” Tziallas said, adding that already Greece’s tourism season has been extended by two months.
He also underlined that the ministry aims to attract new markets such as China and the Arab countries and that a large number of Russian tourists are expected in Greece this year, on the occasion of the “Russia – Greece Year of Tourism 2017-2018”.
Moreover, Tziallas informed that Greece will hold the chairmanship of the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Tourism Committee meeting in October in Paris, a fact he underlined as “very significant”.
Referring to the conference’s host destination, Tziallas highlighted the special potential of the Region of Western Greece and the excellent prospects of promoting the popular and new destinations of Achaia, Ilia and Aitoloakarnania for tourism throughout the year.
He underlined that the destination has a rich history and spoke about the monuments of global cultural value that are centered on Ancient Olympia. He also mentioned the opportunities that exist for religious-pilgrimage tourism in historical monasteries and highlighted the prospects of winter tourism, focusing on the Kalavrita ski center.
Among other things, he spoke about developing city tourism in Patra by focusing on its port and its important festivals.
He added that the completion of the Ionia motorway can help promote new destinations in Aitoloakarnia due to the direct and easy access. The 196 km Ionia motorway runs along the coast of the Ionian Sea from Patras to Ioaninna.