Greece’s Tourism Minister Harry Theoharis said this week he expects to see positive signs for 2020 given 2019 revenue and Greece’s appeal to new source markets.
In an interview with Real FM, the new tourism minister said discussed new potential as well as the necessity for Greece to upgrade marinas and other infrastructure. Mr. Theoharis told the radio station audience:
“We picked up speed in the second half of the season and managed to close with single-digit growth and double-digit revenue this year. The increase may not have been as great in number, but it was in terms of tourism GDP.”
On the marina plans, the minister mentioned an emphasis on Kalamata Pylos, Nafplio and Itea, with tenders to be launched in the coming year. Meanwhile, Theoharis said Greece’s strong brand name, high-quality services, and new investments will give the country a competitive edge against its rivals.
The minister also referred to the growing interest from U.S. and Chinese travelers for visiting Greece, adding that the government’s aim through a series of targeted actions is to welcome some 500,000 Chinese visitors by 2021.
Other key priorities for the tourism ministry in 2020 include the promotion of lesser-known destinations and the extension of the tourism season.
We are a bit familiar with the Pyros Marina situation. Since it was bought by the Vernicos Group, the marina has been in a partially finished stage. We are not aware of any activity since back in 2013. As for Nafplio, there is a commercial harbor but no marina for mooring smaller craft. Conversely, Kalamata is known for providing good marina services. Itea is also incomplete according to our sources.