The Greek tourism ministry is counting on funding from the EU’s post-Covid-19 Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) to push forward with upgrades and modernizations of the sector, said Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias in an interview to news247.gr this week.
Kikilias expressed his confidence that 2022 could prove to be a “benchmark” for Greek tourism marking the “beginning of a new era”.
“In our efforts to change the [tourism] model and to achieve the maximum result possible, we will utilize Recovery and Resilience Facility funds with more than 320,000,000 euros, and that does not include private resources which concern a wide range of projects: from destination management and mountain tourism to health and wellness, agritourism and gastronomy,” he said.
He also referred to the leading role Greece could play in offering “green travel” options, which he said are the future. Greece, he said, is already setting the groundwork for a transition to a more sustainable tourism model minimizing the sector’s environmental footprint.
The minister acknowledged that tourism performance in 2021 not only exceeded all expectations but at the same time established Greece as a safe destination, contributing greatly to the economy.
Lastly, the minister said a main priority was to utilize RRF funds effectively, supporting actions that safeguard the authenticity of the country’s tourism offerings and modernizing tourism education and training.
“So, 2022 can mark the beginning of a new cycle of development in the tourism sector with benefits for all and with the realization through the pandemic that we live in a beautiful country that we must protect for ourselves, our children, for generations to come, and for people from all over the world who every year dream of experiencing some of its magic,” he said.