Greece’s 10-year tourism plan, which is currently under preparation, includes special strategies for the development of the country’s marinas and health tourism, according to Greek Secretary General for Tourism Policy Vicky Loizou.
Speaking recently to journalists during a web meeting, Loizou focused on the country’s marinas, underlining that there is room for improvement to the current framework.
“The legislation on marinas can be improved, as right now it does not have a strategy for promoting investments… We are currently shaping the institutional framework surrounding their management model and carrying out a spatial analysis on for the development of marinas,” she said.
Referring to health tourism, Loizou underlined that combined with the silver economy and wellness tourism, its development will present a significant margin for growth.
The 10-year tourism plan, which is expected to be announced in the near future, will also include a specific strategy for the development of the country’s thermal springs.
“The ministry’s goal is to formulate a strategy and develop a framework through which the sector’s businesses can develop. The aim is to create tools that will be able to help extend the tourist season and increase the per capita expenditure of tourists,” she said.
Loizou also mentioned that the tourism ministry is looking to strengthen Greece’s gastronomy tourism product and is in cooperation with the Ministry of Rural Development and Food for its connection with the primary sector. “Gastronomy tourism could be the vehicle for increasing exports, boosting processing and promoting extroversion,” she said.
Moreover, Loizou highlighted that the ministry is aiming to create a strategy and the conditions that that will help the industry bounce back from this difficult year, see recovery and then experience growth.
“We believe that Greek tourism can grow even more, even from what it was in 2019,” she said.
“This is our goal… Just imagine how much more tourism can bring in, not necessarily as a percentage, but in absolute numbers, if we create the conditions for special and alternative tourism forms to be developed and also attract, for example, digital nomads and silver tourists/retirees for long-term stay in Greece also during winter, autumn and spring,” Loizou added.
In addition, the secretary general informed that the tourism ministry is in contact with other Greek ministries regarding the launch of new programs to support the sector’s companies through resources of the recovery fund.
The new programs will focus on the vocational training and strengthening of the skills of the employees in the tourism field, the digital transformation of enterprises and public services and supporting tourism enterprises through respective programs of the Ministry of Development and Investment.
Also, Loizou mentioned that the new National Strategic Reference Framework (known in Greece as ESPA) is in its planning stage and the tourism ministry is looking to add support actions eligible for tourism.