Greece sets on tourism as a way out of the crisis
While exports are showing signs of fatigue Greece is now betting on tourism as a way forward and out of the crisis. “Our goal is to make Greece an important tourist destination. In order to return to a before-the-crisis GDP level, we must have a 25-30 percent increase. One third of this percentage can result from tourism alone.” Antonis Samaras said according to Keep talking Greece. To promote Greece as tourism destination, a bill is expected to reach Parliament soon, with plans for operational unification of accommodation units, the promotion of new tourism products such as youth hostels, and the introduction of tourism attaches at Greek embassies and consulates around the world, Kathimerini reports. The Tourism branch plans to increase tourism up to 25m by 2021, up from a record 17m this year.
The OECD forecast of 1.2% contraction in 2014, will be proven wrong, says Yannis Stournaras according to Kathimerini. The Bank of Greece agrees, expecting instead the economy to recover and register 0.6% growth in GDP next year.
The Greek government, meanwhile, decided to exempt farmers from the single property tax, meaning that the revenues have yet to come from other owners. It also decided to cut administrative costs of the armed forces, reducing the number of high-ranking officers by 20%.