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Record takings from tourism in first eight months of 2013

By Stathis Kousounis

Greek tourism registered an all-time record in revenues for the first eight months of the year, as takings in the January-August period amounted to 8.68 billion euros, beating the 2008 record of 8.67 billion.

Total revenues for the whole of 2008 came to 11.6 billion, and the head of the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises (SETE), Andreas Andreadis, is anticipating 11.6 billion euros for 2013 too, which would climb to 12.2 billion euros when revenues from cruise tourism are included.

Although the official announcement of the data for the year to end-August is still pending, the increase in tourism arrivals in the first eight months of this year compared to 2012 amounts to 1.5 million, according to sources: Arrivals reached 12.46 million against 10.96 million last year. SETE therefore expects arrivals to reach 17.5 million by the end of 2013.

On Monday the Bank of Greece issued the details for the first six months of the year, showing an 18.1 percent increase in revenues, 14.2 percent annual growth in stay-overs, and a 12.3 percent rise in foreign tourist arrivals.

Revenues from cruise passengers posted a 9.5 percent yearly rise in the first half of 2013, climbing to 185 million euros from 169 million in the first half of 2012. Cruise tourism brought a total of 519.4 million euros into Greece in the whole of 2012, the BoG data showed. The lionís share (40.4 percent) was from those who docked in the port of Piraeus last year. Corfu accounted for 12.3 percent and Santorini for 9.6 percent.

On Tuesday, in the context of the second day of SETEís Tourism and Growth conference, McKinsey & Company will present a study which will reportedly show that about 3.3 billion euros should be invested every year in tourism for each of the next eight years in order to attain the targets of 24 million international arrivals per annum, per capita spending of 750-800 euros and a total of 31-33 million euros of revenues by 2021.

The private sector will need to invest some 22 billion euros and the state should contribute through resources from European Union-subsidized programs.

ekathimerini.com , Monday October 21, 2013 (21:52)  
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