Greece sees 2021 tourism recovering after strong Jan-Aug – minister

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ATHENS, Nov 14 (Businesshala) – Greece has seen revenue from its major tourism industry reach August 2019 levels in eight months, its tourism minister said in an interview published on Sunday, in line with the government’s projection earlier in the year. .

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As COVID-19 brought global travel to a standstill, Greek tourism, which accounts for about a fifth of the economy, suffered the worst year on record in 2020, with only 7 million visitors in revenue of 4 billion euros. Bring it

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But as the Mediterranean tourist hotspot opened its doors to foreign travellers in May, government and industry officials said they were expecting 40-50% of 2019 revenue, with 33 million visitors garnering a record 18 billion euros. brought in revenue.

Vasilis Kikilias told Vima newspaper, “From January to August, arrivals increased by 79.2% compared to the same period in 2020, and related receipts (roses) increased by 135.7%, which corresponds to 50% of receipts for 2019. ” ,

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“We are on track to achieve more than 10 billion euros,” he said.

A growing number of foreign visitors came to the country this summer, after Greece lifted most restrictions related to the pandemic ahead of its prime summer tourist season.

“We haven’t counted to the finals yet,” Kikilias said. September, October and November were also busy months.

Greece is banking on tourism after the economy shrank by 9% last year due to a recession. Under its 2022 draft budget, the government projected the economy to grow by 6.1% this year.

Last week, the European Union Commission revised its economic forecasts for Greece, noting that the country’s economic output is growing at a faster rate of 7.1% this year.

Speaking to a Greek television station on Saturday, Finance Minister Christos Stykouras said the final budget to be presented to parliament in the coming days would include an estimate that would be closer to the commission’s estimates. (Reporting by Angelique Coutantou; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

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