Tourism riding out the storm, says minister

Groups of tourists can be seen at the foot of the Acropolis in this file photo. According to Tourism Minister Costas Markopoulos, the sector hasn’t been hit as hard by the global financial crisis as was forecast at the beginning of the year. ‘Despite the current economic climate, things are progressing in a satisfactory manner and, of course, being monitored,’ Markopoulos told reporters. The drop in tourism to the country is between a ‘single-digit and double-digit’ decline for the year right now, he added. The Bank of Greece recently reported that tourism revenues in the first five months of the year fell 17.9 percent, or 1.7 billion euros, compared to the same period last year.