The Greek tourism ministry is closely monitoring the Russia-Ukraine crisis in order to address the potential backlash on tourism in terms of inbound travel and rising energy costs.
Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias said it was vital to first evaluate the situation before announcing any actions. In an interview to Real FM on Tuesday, Kikilias said the ministry was assessing the impact of the conflict on tourism flows and on the energy sector. He said both the pandemic and the potential emergence of new Covid-19 strains as well as the Russia-Ukraine conflict are bound to affect incoming tourism from both Russia and Ukraine which before the outbreak of Covid-19, generated roughly 0.5 billion euros.
“Clearly, this crisis worries us,” said Kikilias, adding that he had requested an evaluation of the situation by the finance ministry.
Earlier on Tuesday, Germany decided to halt certification of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Greece expects the imminent energy crisis to affect air tickets, increase energy costs at hotels and other related services and affect overall pricing of package deals worldwide.
Kikilias stressed however that it was important to wait before taking any decisions.
Russia and Ukraine are important source markets for Greece. Earlier this year, the Russian embassy had confirmed an increase in flights to Greek destinations in 2022, said Kikilias.
“We will wait to see how the situation in Ukraine develops. At the moment it is not good. I believe that on a governments level there will be a formula that can resolve the situation,” he said.