Just 15 days ahead of the country’s official opening to tourists, Greece’s hoteliers are calling on the government to take immediate action and support the Covid-19-hit sector, which it says, is lacking the necessary liquidity to restart operations.
“Fifteen days before the official opening of tourism and we are unable to understand how exactly our members will be able to re-open, and under what conditions this will happen. Liquidity for our companies is in the red,” said the Hellenic Federation of Hoteliers (POX) in a letter to the ministers of development & investments and labor.
POX goes on to note that hotels have been closed for a year with no revenue, adding that state aid only helped cover running costs. At the same time, the federation adds that seasonal hotels that chose to operate during the previous tourism season suffered losses, while all-year hospitality enterprises which remained open “continue to increase their losses”.
“It’s already May and there are zero reservations. If the epidemiological situation in the country improves, we may start operating in July. If the epidemiological data in source markets (Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland, US, etc.) improves, we may start to see occupancy as of August,” said the federation, referring to the difficulties its member hotels have to re-open in time.
POX said the government should have announced a support program for hotel companies ahead of their re-opening and provided clear solutions as to ways they will meet running costs as well as whether seasonal enterprises have the right to suspend employee contracts, among others.