Tourism SMEs under threat from taxation


Thousands of small and medium-sized family enterprises in the tourism sector could be forced out of business due to excessive taxation, the head of the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE), Andreas Andreadis, said at the association’s 15th “Tourism and Growth” conference.

He went on to identify another risk for the sector, as the country may miss out on attracting the necessary tourism investment that would improve the quality of services offered, while otherwise healthy enterprises might also be unable to have their nonperforming loans restructured.

Andreadis called on the government to act swiftly to improve the competitiveness of the Greek tourism sector by restoring lower tax rates, bolstering entrepreneurship, creating an investor-friendly environment and boosting cash flow in the real economy.

Aegean Air vice president Eftychis Vassilakis added that while the target for the increase in foreign tourists will be met this year, this will not be the case with tourism revenues. He also stressed the need for Greece to shake the bonds of seasonal tourism, for example by copying the successful models of foreign countries.

European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas stated that the Greek economy has to stop slowing down tourism and start facilitating it. He said there is a pressing need for an executive team on tourism that will make quick decisions on issues concerning the sector.