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Greek Tourism Chief Sees Past COVID-19 Pandemic, 10-Year Strategic Plan

Αssociated Press

A woman with a child leaves a beach of Glyfada suburb, south of Athens, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Yorgos Karahalis)

ATHENS - While focused on the immediate - when tourism can resume as the COVID-19 pandemic hangs on - Tourism Minister Haris Theoharis said the agency is putting together a 10-year plan to keep people coming.

That was discussed at the 13th Meeting of the Regional Tourism Council where he talked about important international contacts and new collaborations in the field of tourism, said Kathimerini.

“Now is the opportunity to take advantage of the successful opening of tourism and the good image our country has abroad,” said Theocharis, the sector being the country’s biggest revenue engine.

Greece had been on a run of record tourism years before the pandemic ended that fast and hard during 2020 despite efforts to make it safe for international travelers who shied away, and those from the hardest-hit countries, such as the United States, not allowed to enter.

He said that despite the pandemic’s grip lingering that, “This year will be better than last year, as vaccinations will proceed. We will capitalize on our success last year. This is the direction of the contacts we have had with other countries, which are showing clear interest in Greece as a tourist destination in the Mediterranean and Southern Europe. Our main goal, both for 2021 and in the long run, is to attract all markets and to mitigate seasonality.”

While the agency is looking as far ahead as 2031, he said some facets are already in place for now and then, including promotional campaigns and utilizing international health protocols.