SETE Chief Sees Greece 2023 Tourism Revenues Exceeding €18.2bn
Greek tourism stakeholders are expecting at least 18.2 billion euros in tourism-related revenues this year, exceeding both pre-Covid 2019’s record 18.2 billion euros and 2022 levels.
In an interview to ANA-MPA, Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE) President Yiannis Retsos said he was expecting 2023 revenues to reach 18.2 billion euros beating last year’s 17.63 billion euros, which was down on his initial forecasts last year for 2022.
Citing international trends, Retsos said he expected Greece’s upward tourism dynamic to continue beyond 2023. SETE’s chief attributes Greece’s positive tourism performance to a strong brand name established during the pandemic.
“Greece is cashing in on the very good brand name that was built during the pandemic… in 2020, it was the only Mediterranean country that opened its borders with complete success,” said Retsos, adding that Greece managed to handle the serious Covid crisis setting an example that other countries followed.
Additionally, he said, with its decision to open to the American market during Covid-19, Greece won over US travelers who are now returning and staying.
Retsos stressed the importance of sustainability and planning so that Greece can maintain its 5th position as a world recognizable tourism brand.
“Strategy is needed, destination management is needed, infrastructure upgrades are needed, waste management is needed. These are some of the issues that should be given immediate answers,” said Retsos, adding that “modern promotional tools” that will keep Greece ahead of competition are also crucial.
Lastly, Retsos underlined the importance of resolving staff shortages, an issue plaguing tourism enterprises countrywide.
In this direction he proposes immediate measures that will address poor working conditions such as regular inspections. “Staff shortages will be with us for quite some time,” said Retsos stressing the need to offer younger tourism employees upgraded tourism education and training.
The importance of upskilling and reskilling in maintaining Greece’s reputation as a leading tourism destination and the urgent need to train professionals prepared to meet the growing demands of the new era are the focus of a SETE Intelligence (INSETE) study released earlier this month.
Having served for two two-year terms as SETE president, Retsos will be stepping down on May 31 during the federation’s annual general assembly.