Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed confidence that Greece will continue to win over more international travelers as the reputation and brand name of the country becomes stronger.
One of the country’s key industries and a main revenue-generator, tourism can move into the new era by upgrading the products on offer, extending the tourism season and promoting alternative forms of tourism, said Mitsotakis during a meeting this week on Kos with the island’s mayor Theodosis Nikitaras and local tourism stakeholders.
Commenting on data provided by Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias, Mitsotakis said “the figures are encouraging. We must acknowledge that the substantial improvement of the country’s image has had a direct effect on our tourism product”.
Mitsotakis stressed that the management of the Covid-19 pandemic further upgraded the country on the global tourist market.
“Greece handled the coronavirus pandemic much better than many other European countries, with responsibility, professionalism, with new digital tools, and this helped us change the overall image of the country, so that today Greece can be a preferred destination for visitors from all over the world,” he said.
Referring to the “GR-eco Islands” program, the Greek prime minister went on to note that the dynamic shift to a green and circular economy through initiatives implemented for the green transformation of the islands, will contribute to both improving the quality of life of residents and improving the country’s tourism product, making Greece even more attractive.
Lastly, the meeting on Kos, focused on the restoring tourism flows to the island which has suffered greatly from the ongoing refugee crisis.
In the first four months of 2022, Kos welcomed 113,000 visitors recouping 92.4 percent of pre-Covid 2019 levels. Inbound traffic in the January-April period marked a 6.1 percent rise over 2019 with traveler flows from Germany up by 13.4 percent and from the UK by 174 percent over 2019.
Earlier this year, the tourism and migration ministries joined forces to promote the five Eastern Aegean islands (Kos among them) that have faced the brunt of the ongoing refugee crisis over the last few years which took a toll on incoming tourism. They agreed to allocate 2 million euros for the tourism promotion of the islands and provides compensation or grants to areas affected by refugee flows and the Covid-19 pandemic.