Op-Ed: ‘Paradigm Shift, a Priority to Make Tourism Thrive in the Coming Decade’ – Vicky Loizou
The Greek Travel Pages (GTP) has provided a podium for Greece’s key tourism figures to share their vision for the day after the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The Covid-19 pandemic caused a universal tourism collapse.
Greek tourism suffered a huge blow in 2020. We strongly believe that it is within this looming context that opportunities arise.
The pandemic made the country realize its weaknesses and at the same time highlighted the prospects of tourism for the Greek economy as a whole.
Our first reaction was to shield the tourism ecosystem from collapsing. Then, our major concern was the safe reopening for both travelers and the local population. And the last step is to prioritize our paradigm shift to make tourism thrive in the coming decade.
The tourism ecosystem, in the pandemic aftermath, can still be the driving force that will put Greece back on the growth track. We have to create the conditions for economic recovery and growth through an upgraded and diversified tourism product.
Greece, as a tourist destination, is considered a mature market for the traditional sea & sun product. At the same time, the country is an “emerging destination” in underexplored secondary markets which, if fully exploited, will boost economic growth and development, foremost
in less developed regions. We place great emphasis on exploring and investing in thematic forms of tourism — such as marine, medical, thermal, silver — which will help to extend the tourism season and increase profitability at the same time. With our 10-year strategic plan for sustainable tourism development, we are introducing a new paradigm that is greener, more digital and more diverse.
Ιt is crucial for us to pay special attention to the strong regional dimension tourism has, which needs to come to the foreground, making sure that the needs of the diverse regional tourism ecosystems are fully integrated into all relevant EU policies in a coherent way and thus contributing to tackling inequalities, improve quality of life, enhance competitiveness and bring added value.”
* This Op-Ed originally appeared in the Greek Travel Pages (GTP) annual printed edition for 2021. Press here for more information.