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Hoteliers Against Direct Subsidies for New Hotels

Hoteliers last month called for a more discriminating application of the investment incentives law for the construction of four- and five-star hotels, and went as far as to demand restrictions in the approval of subsidized projects.

The Hotels Chamber and the Panhellenic Federation of Hoteliers said in a joint announcement that their sector’s permanent position is that more attention be given to the modernization of existing units and to special tourism infrastructure projects, all of which would serve to upgrade the quality of the Greek tourism product in the best way possible and allow for free business competition.

Both groups of hoteliers disagreed with the allocation of direct subsidies for new hotel units in areas of high tourism development. They said that through such measures the price of the land rises disproportionately and the hotel product’s price is lowered. Instead, they urged government to retain its policy of determining sections in the country where direct incentives do not apply.

Similarly, the Association of Greek Tourist Enterprises says the government’s intention to proceed with subsidizing new hotels before the zoning planning for tourism is complete, and without any specific criteria for enriching and varying the tourism product, goes against the spirit of the investment incentives law for balanced development, the improvement of tourism’s competitiveness and the protection of the environment.

However, once all these procedures are in place, the association said it would have no reason to go against any government plan to subsidize new four- and five-star hotels.

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