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Minister Kountoura Sees Cruise Tourism as Vital Force for Greece

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Xu Lirong, Chairman of the Board and Party Secretary of China Cosco Shipping Corporation Limited, and Greek Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura.

Xu Lirong, Chairman of the Board and Party Secretary of China Cosco Shipping Corporation Limited, and Greek Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura.

Promoting Greece’s sea tourism options, including more Greek destinations in cruise itineraries, offering a wide variety of theme-related journeys and strengthening public-private partnerships (PPPs) are at the core of the tourism ministry’s agenda for the further reinforcement of the cruise sector, Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura said during the launch of a new pier at Piraeus port on Monday, aiming to handle incoming cruise ships.

Minister Kountoura underlined the major contribution of cruise tourism to this year’s improved tourism figures, citing “the excellent performance of the cruise sector and the very good results of Piraeus Port, which in the first eight months of the year saw international passenger arrivals increase by more than 17 percent compared to the same period in 2015”.

The new pier at Piraeus port.

The new pier at Piraeus port.

Angeliki Chondromatidou, Vice President of Greek National Tourism Organisation; Georgios Tziallas, General Secretary of Tourism Ministry; Captain Χu Lirong, Chairman Of China Cosco Shipping Corporation Limited; Elena Kountoura, Alternate Tourism Minister; Captain Fu Chengqiu, Ceo Of PPA; and Angelos Karakostas, Deputy Ceo Of PPA.

Angeliki Chondromatidou, Vice President of Greek National Tourism Organisation; Georgios Tziallas, General Secretary of Tourism Ministry; Captain Χu Lirong, Chairman Of China Cosco Shipping Corporation Limited; Elena Kountoura, Alternate Tourism Minister; Captain Fu Chengqiu, Ceo Of PPA; and Angelos Karakostas, Deputy Ceo Of PPA.

Kountoura stressed the need for private and public bodies to work together in order to better promote Greece to global decision-makers and “to maintain the country’s market share and achieve a positive result”.

In this direction, Kountoura referred to the recent establishment of the country’s first National Coordinating Committee for Cruise Affairs with the participation of 28 public and private shareholders.

“Through national development planning we are striving to develop and modernize port infrastructure, upgrade services in tune with international standards and resolve issues impacting the sector,” Kountoura said, adding that the ministry aims to work closer with the private sector in order to secure “strategic partnerships”.

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