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SETE: Over-taxation Limiting Greece Tourism Potential

greeceGreek tourism enterprises are deeply concerned about the future, despite three consecutive record years in tourism numbers, according to the president of the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE), Andreas Andreadis.

“Today we are at a turning point. Tourism is facing the extreme pressure created by unprecedented conditions under which Greek entrepreneurship lies”, he said while delivering a speech at the General Meeting of the Bank of Greece on Thursday.

According to Mr. Andreadis, some 40 percent of the country’s tourism enterprises are currently facing serious sustainability issues, mainly due to over-taxation. Meanwhile, the sharing economy and illegal accommodation practices amount to some 250 million euros in lost income.

“This is because the government has yet to ensure a fair framework and fiscal symmetry with respect to hotels and lodges”, he said.

SETE’s president referred to the over-taxation of the sector as the reason why Greek tourism enterprises are not enjoying a competitive edge against competitors.

He stressed that most troubling of all was that over-taxation practices in Greece are showing no signs of slowing down.

“When we believe that finally the cycle of new taxes and additional charges are complete, we constantly hear announcements about new measures. In this context, Greek tourism will not be competitive and the state will continue to lose revenue and goals”, he underlined.

Citing data from a study of the SETE Institute (InSETE), he noted that Greece lags behind its main competitors — Cyprus, Croatia, Turkey, Spain and Italy — when it comes to tax incentives for tourism investment.

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