Fmr Secretary General,
Greek National Tourism Organization
PHILOXENIA 2011 greeting.
In these very challenging moments Greece is experiencing, the competitiveness and dynamism of the Greek tourism industry is having an extraordinary performance, recording an increase of inbound tourists and revenue of approximately 11 percent and 14 percent respectively for the first seven months of 2011.
The Greek tourism contribution to the Greek GDP and employment stands at 16 percent and 19 percent respectively and the growth potential of the industry for the next decade is projected to be one the strongest, in respect to other sectors of the Greek economy.
GNTO’s strategy targets to make Greece a unique and differentiated global tourism destination. To achieve this we work on two axis: on one side we work constantly to upgrade the quality and develop the competitiveness of the Greek tourism product and on the other side we are promoting and advertising our product to the international markets in order to increase the foreign tourism inbound demand and our global market share.
In our effort to raise the competitiveness of Greek tourism we have taken a number of measures this year such as the reduction of the VAT rate on accommodation at 6.5 percent, the uplifting of cabotage, the abolishment of landing and take-off charges in all national airports (except Elefterios Venizelos in Athens).
In advertising Greek tourism to international markets our aim is to increase the demand for all Greece, all year long, from all over the world. This year’s performance has also been the outcome of a successful execution of our new “tailor made” marketing strategy per market, per product, per target group.
Our duty at GNTO is to work even harder to sustain the strong performance of the Greek tourism industry and to meet our long-term objectives with success, while at the same time to assist and join forces with all stakeholders in our common aim, which is to build Greece as one of the top destination brands in the world.