ECONOMY

Industrial conflict ends in tourism

The industrial conflict in the hotel sector has come to a happy end as on Friday the Panhellenic Federation of Hoteliers and the hotel employee union (POEE-YTE) signed a new collective labor contract following five months of negotiations and several days of strikes.

The hoteliers’ federation announced that the two sides have agreed on cutting the basic salary by 15 percent while retaining all benefits for the staff, even those to be abolished according to the bailout agreement Greece has signed with its creditors. There will be no changes to the institutional provisions of the previous contract.

The new contract will be valid until December 31, 2013.

“Given that the vast majority of hotel units, which are small and medium-sized enterprises, are fighting for their survival, the new national collective labor contract for the sector is seen to be shielding the labor environment in the Greek hotel industry, averting practices that cast a shadow over the image of the sector and undermine the quality and value of the hotel product,» read the federation’s statement.

Tourism Minister Olga Kefaloyianni greeted the agreement reached, stating that «the signing of a new contract is a positive development of key significance for the hotel sector for this and next season as well as for the country’s tourism in general.”

She went on to stress that it secures industrial peace in the context of a fragile social environment, a condition that is absolutely necessary in the effort to bring tourism back to its normal mode.