Boosting accommodation capacity at popular destinations, accelerating hotel upgrades, tapping into new destinations through investments in tourism infrastructure that will support an extended tourism season are key to converting the negative effects of the debt crisis into growth in the coming years, according to a PwC study on the Greek economy released this week.
At the same time, efforts must be made to enhance investor confidence in order to minimize the investment gap at 110 billion euros, the functionality of Greece’s financing mechanism must be restored and investor-friendly policies must be adapted in order to drive healthy and sustainable growth.
In terms of tourism, 1.7 billion euros in financing is required to support the creation of 45,000 new beds by 2022, broken down to 35,000 on Crete, 3,000 in the South Aegean Region and 7,000 on the Ionian Islands, where capacity is full during peak tourism season.
Financing needs for the upgrade and maintenance of existing hotels in order to secure competitiveness come to 2.3 billion euros for exiting facilities; 0.8 billion euros for maintenance; or 4.8 billion euros in total by 2022.
At the same time, the PwC survey underlines the need to boost competitiveness by adding capacity to main destinations, upgrading hotels to the next category and developing secondary or lesser-known destinations with targeted marketing actions.
In this direction, PwC analysts stress the importance of tax deductibles and incentives to increase the size of tourist businesses and expand or upgrade hotel units, accelerating licensing procedures, focusing priority on investments in tourism infrastructure in areas and services such as food, transport, museums and attractions that will support destinations.