ECONOMY

Tourism industry calls for state coordination

The inefficient organization of the broader public sector’s tourism activities is undermining the government’s position that tourism is one of the main pillars of the country’s financial growth, according to industry professionals. The Association of Greek Tourist Enterprises (SETE) cites the problems that have been noted at museums and archaeological sites and stresses that the negative impression tourists get from limited opening hours come on top of the lags in general infrastructure (airports, ports, roads etc). This lack of organization also reduces the efficiency of enterprises, as it cancels out some of the efforts to promote Greece. Within this context, SETE has called for better coordination on tourism matters between the government and the broader public sector. SETE members note there have been delays in the preparation of certain infrastructure and services, as the execution of projects and the hiring of people have to clear many bureaucratic hurdles. As red tape will not ease anytime soon, timely planning could have reduced some of the delays, the group argues. Finally SETE suggests that local authorities must also show that tourism is a priority as well as the welfare of local people by taking timely measures for the preparation of each destination.