The Hellenic Association of Accredited Certification and Inspection Bodies (Hellas Cert) is calling on the government to make revisions to the recently passed law covering thematic and special interest tourism with regard to certification procedures.
Hellas Cert is expressing its disagreement with the decision to transfer from the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels (HCH) the responsibility to issue optional classification certificates for rented furnished rooms or apartments to regional tourism services.
According to Hellas Cert, the HCH works in collaboration with 33 certification bodies accredited by the National Accreditation System (ESYD) which are staffed with experienced and specially trained professionals to carry out the inspections ahead of certification ensuring speed and consistency, and that international standards are met.
Hellas Cert goes on to add that all of the procedures are carried out, supervised and archived through a modern information system designed, implemented and maintained by the HCH, ensuring consistency, less red tape, and full monitoring and control of the process.
This model, Hellas Cert notes, is considered successful and has been welcomed by both economy and tourism sector policymakers as well as by tourism professionals.
In view of this, Hellas Cert is calling on the tourism ministry to clearly define the procedure of certification that should – according to the Hellas Cert – continue to allow the HCH and the accredited certification bodies to carry out inspections and the regional tourism services to oversee the procedure and the issue of classification certificates, thus ensuring a smooth continuation of the process and as little disruption as possible.
Hellas Cert points out that “already understaffed” regional services will be unable to carry out an additional 40,000 on-the-spot checks and proceed with certifications within the next 12 months as foreseen by the law.
In relevant news, the Greek Tourist Accommodation Federation (FEDE) has also called on government officials to address a series of pending issues under the new tourism law passed in Greek parliament late last year.