A unified EU-wide approach to precautionary measures aimed at preventing the spread of Covid-19 and a transition to a new tourism model that will respect the environment and the unique cultural features of each country in Europe, will be the stepping stones on which the sector can reestablish itself, said Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE) President Yiannis Retsos during the European Tourism Convention (ETC) on Monday.
Participating virtually in an ETC event titled “Fireside Chat on the European Tourism Ecosystem of Tomorrow”, Retsos underlined the importance of building steady foundations that will be able to support the sector in the coming years and ensure its resiliency during challenges.
The priority now, according to Retsos, is to support businesses and tourism employees, make available considerable funding tools for the sector through the Recovery Fund, and offer incentives for future sustainable projects.
Looking ahead, Retsos said he expects mass tourism to return after the pandemic and that stakeholders must focus on destination management which will safeguard environment and local communities.
In this direction, SETE’s chief underlined the importance of offering incentives for investments in green and digital technologies and practices as well as certifying destinations that meet these standards.
Key to the tourism of the future, according to Retsos, is the need for extensive upskill training options for tourism employees in order to meet the changing demands, as well as inclusive hiring practices.
“We discussed the present and future of tourism in Europe. Challenges, opportunities, new trends, during the pandemic era. Solutions can be reached if we stay united! Greek tourism will get over this crisis. A new growth model is needed for the next day,” said Retsos via his twitter account after the event.
Following participation in Monday’s convention, Retsos also spoke at the European People’s Party group (EPP Group) parliamentary meeting.