Tourism – a natural field for bilateral cooperation between Greece and Germany
Germans love Greece. Greece is a country of beauty, history and culture, blessed by the unique light of the Mediterranean. Its famous philoxenia and its mild climate make Greece a top travel destination for Germans.
Tourism is a pillar of Greece’s economy, accounting for about 20% of its GDP and a fourth of jobs – directly or indirectly. There are tremendous opportunities: despite the crisis of the last decade tourism in Greece is on the rise. The figures of the first eight months of 2018 clearly indicate an extremely successful year for Greece with up to 30 million visitors, among them 3,7 million from Germany.
Germans love Greece. For this reason alone, tourism is a natural field for bilateral cooperation. And there is huge potential for further growth. I am glad that German companies are in the frontseat of the positive developments which took place in the last years. Let me just mention Fraport Greece which assumed the management of 14 airports around the country last year. This investment will contribute significantly to the modernization of tourism infrastructure creating jobs in the respective regions at the same time. But also Europe’s largest holiday operator TUI Group is constantly expanding its business in Greece as one of the most important tourism markets in the world.
600 weekly flights from Germany to Greece speak volumes for the desire of my compatriots to visit such a vibrant city like Athens or naturally Greek islands like Crete, Rhodes, Corfu or Kos.
Cooperation between our two countries in the field of tourism can mean to boost partnerships among tourism businesses or to cooperate even closer in the areas of promotion and effective marketing strategies.
Cooperation between our two countries in the field of tourism can mean to boost partnerships among tourism businesses or to cooperate even closer in the areas of promotion and effective marketing strategies. However, of particular importance for the future is a sustainable concept for good training in this sector. Dual training programs such as the only recently concluded German-Greek collaboration project MENDI (Mentoring Dual International) aiming to encourage apprenticeships in the hotel sector and fight youth unemployment are best practice.
Finally, extending the tourist season in Greece is crucial and I am happy to see first promising results – even for me working in the capital I can feel it in the streets of Athens these days ….