Greece made an impressive climb of seven places in the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2017 to reach the 24th position in the global rankings. The biennial report was released on Wednesday by the WEF and ranks 136 countries according to their attractiveness and ability to develop their travel and tourism industries. In the 2015 report Greece ranked 31st among 141 countries.
Spain once again heads the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report and is followed by France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, Australia, Italy, Canada and Switzerland.
According to the WEF, Greece’s performance is linked to the country’s exceptional efforts to value its natural resources (32nd, up 14 places), both directly, via stronger digital demand (19th) and indirectly, through environmental protection (39th, up 22 places) and marketing activity (43rd, up 19 places).
At the same time, price, competitiveness has increased significantly (90th, up 23 places) thanks to declining cost of accommodation for international tourists, lower fuel cost and reduced ticket taxes and airport charges to incentivize tourism directly.
“These policies have contributed to generate more international arrivals, but have produced mixed results in terms of revenues,” the report notes. “To increase arrivals and revenues, Greece should focus on making its business environment (103rd) friendlier, with lower impediments to FDIs, reduced taxation on profits and enhanced efficiency of the legislative system.”
Moreover, in today’s tech-savvy world, Greece also needs to become more ICT ready (51st). To date, businesses still make little use of new technologies for business-to-business (98th) and business-to-customer (82nd) transactions. Improving its visa policies (73rd) is another measure that would impact revenues and international arrivals with little financial investment required.
The theme of this year’s Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report: Paving the Way for a More Sustainable and Inclusive Future, highlights the travel and tourism industry’s commitment to be a force for good in an era marked by jobless growth, growing concerns of a “green-less” future and mounting fears of isolationism and nativism.