ATHENS — Main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance leader Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday had an online meeting with the president and board of the Panhellenic Federation of Restaurant and Related Professions.
According to a SYRIZA announcement, the restauranteurs presented figures about the overall state of the hospitality sector, as well as their fears that six in 10 businesses were in danger of folding for good in the near future, with the sector on the verge of financial collapse.
The sector directly employs 300,000 people, as well as providing work for many more through its suppliers and interdependent sectors of the economy. They noted that the returnable advance, which is essentially another loan and a postponement of their financial obligations by a few months will not address the survival issues now facing the entire sector.
Tsipras accused the government of having an "arrogant stance" toward the hospitality sector, which has been forced to stay closed for six months, criticising statements by Finance Minister Christos Staikouras and Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis that they had an increase in turnover due to take-away food. He also noted that the money given by the government to the real economy was "too little, too late."