Εκδήλωση Ελληνικής Πρεσβείας για τον τουρισμό (Βαρσοβία, 30/11/2011)

Εκδήλωση με θέμα «Οι προοπτικές της συνεργασίας Ελλάδας – Πολωνίας στον τουριστικό τομέα», με διοργανωτή το Γραφείο Οικονομικών και Εμπορικών Υποθέσεων της Ελληνικής Πρεσβείας, πραγματοποιήθηκε στις 30 Νοεμβρίου στη Βαρσοβία. Η εκδήλωση είχε ως στόχο την διερεύνηση δυνατοτήτων και προοπτικών ενίσχυσης και περαιτέρω προώθησης της τουριστικής συνεργασίας μεταξύ Ελλάδας και Πολωνίας. 
Περίπου 400.000 πολωνοί τουρίστες επισκέφθηκαν τη χώρα μας κατά το 2010, σημειώνοντας αύξηση κατά 98% σε σχέση με το 2009 (στοιχεία ΣΕΤΕ), ενώ οι συνολικές εισπράξεις από την έλευσή τους έφθασαν στα 217 εκ. ευρώ (στοιχεία Τράπεζας της Ελλάδας). Αντίστοιχα, υπήρξαν 39.500 αφίξεις ελλήνων τουριστών στην Πολωνία, οι συνολικές πληρωμές των οποίων έφθασαν στα 24 εκ. ευρώ, με αποτέλεσμα το πλεόνασμα στο τουριστικό ισοζύγιο υπέρ της χώρας μας να φθάνει στα 193 εκ. ευρώ.
Η φετινή εκδήλωση με θέμα  ‘’Enhancing the prospects of Greek & Polish cooperation in the tourism sector’’, αποτελούσε συνέχεια αντιστοίχων εκδηλώσεων οικονομικού ενδιαφέροντος, των προηγουμένων τεσσάρων ετών. Επιδίωξη της ήταν η ενημέρωση της τοπικής τουριστικής επιχειρηματικής κοινότητας, πολωνικής και ελληνικής (tour operators, tour agents, δημοσιογράφοι, υπουργεία, επιμελητήρια, ακαδημαϊκή κοινότητα), για την κατάσταση στον τομέα του ελληνικού τουρισμού, αλλά και για τις δυνατότητες και ευκαιρίες για ανάληψη επιχειρηματικών πρωτοβουλιών που προσφέρονται, αντίστοιχα, στην Ελλάδα και στη Πολωνία. Continue reading

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Greek Exports Rise to Over 10% of GDP

Exports account for more than 10% of Greece’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), or more than €20 billion on an annual basis, recording a 13% growth rate, according to the Panhellenic Exporters Association.
In a report over export trends in the January-August period, the Association estimates that Greek exports grew by 11% (€18 billion) last year, while the Organisation for Economic Cο-Operation and Development (OECD) has revised upwards its projections for a 9.4% growth rate, from an initial 6%.
Presenting the report, the Association Chairwoman Christina Sakellaridi said the figures “confirm the importance of exporting business activity in the effort towards the recovery of the Greek economy.”

 Greek exports -excluding oil products- surpassed €20.5 billion in the September 2010-August 2011 period, an increase by 13.3% compared to the previous 12-month period. The August export figures represent a 32% rise in fuels and oil products, a 42.5% increase in confidential products, a 15% rise in machinery/transport, a 13% increase in industrial products.
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

Tourism: challenges and priorities outlined by PM George Papandreou

Addressing the 19th General Assembly of the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE) on 4th May, Prime Minister George Papandreou outlined the priorities, the goals and the successes of the government policy in tourism sector and the promotion of Greece abroad. Papandreou focused on the simplification of the licensing process in tourist investments, stressing that tourism should be one of the basic pillars for boosting the Greek economy.
“In the coming months there will be a licensing simplification in investments and facilitation of visa issuing for nationals of emerging economies such as China and Russia. […] There will also be a reduction in the prices of sea transport tickets, as well as in landing and take-off fees at several airports,” said Papandreou noting that the tourism industry has been reporting positive signs as what is being offered is quality service at good prices.
Referring to the enormous potential of Internet and social networking, Papandreou hailed the online promotion of Greece via the official site of Visit Greece, the newly launched my-greece.gr, and through social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube.
Prime Minister.GR: Tourism policy – Results (in Greek); YouTube: You in Greece Campaign [VIDEO]
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

World Poetry Day – 2011 Elytis Year

Odysseas Elytis and his work will be the focus of this year’s World Poetry Day, which is celebrated each year on March 21.
The National Book Centre of Greece (EKEBI) launches a poetry campaign including several events.
One of the day’s highlights is an event jointly organized by EKEBI and the Hellenic Authors’ Society which brings together well-known poets and writers such as Katerina Anghelaki-Rooke, Vassilis Vasilikos, Kiki Dimoula and Evgenia Fakinou to recite poems by Odysseas Elytis.
Athenians and citizens of Thessaloniki, Mytillini, Rhodes and Zakynthos will have the opportunity to come across illustrated verses by Elytis as public transport means will feature some of the Nobel laureate’s most beloved and renowned poems. Poetry reading nights, with young poets will also be held in Athens and Thessaloniki.
Moreover in Athens, poet Nanos Valaoritis will present a new theory regarding Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey at the Hellenic American Union, while at the Michael Cacoyannis Foundation, World Poetry Day will be celebrated through poetry, music and stand-up poetry.
The year 2011 has been designated as an Elytis Year by Culture and Tourism Ministry, in order to mark the 100th anniversary since the birth of the Nobel laureate poet.
Nobel Prize Organisation: Excerpt from Worthy It Is, Poetry International Web- Odysseas Elytis: I Lived the Beloved Name, Drinking the Sun of Corinth, Marina of the Rocks, The Wind That Loiters.
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

Gaza Crisis

The Foreign Ministry has issued a statement this morning, saying that it has activated its Crisis Management Unit upon learning that Israeli armed forces had blocked the course of and seized vessels transporting humanitarian aid to Gaza.

Citizens with family or friends participating in the mission “ Ship to Gaza” can call the contact number +30 210 368 1730. 
It is Greece’s longstanding position that any activities undertaken by non-governmental organizations must go unhindered, provided that they are legal, is mentioned in the statement.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Crisis Management Unit activated regarding the humanitarian aid transport operation in Gaza & Greek News Agenda: Greece sends aid shipment to Gaza in 2009
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

New era in Greek-Turkish relations

» High Level Cooperation

Premier George Papandreou and Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan expressed their will to take important steps towards the improvement of Greek-Turkish relations, as the Turkish leader wrapped up an official visit to Athens on Saturday.
This was sealed with the opening session of the Greece-Turkey High Level Cooperation Council and the signing of 21 agreements.
George Papandreou met with the chiefs of Turkish media, while Erdogan with the chiefs of the Greek newspapers.
The Greek premier told Turkish journalists that Erdogan’s visit heralds a new era in Greek-Turkish relations, further adding that the two sides had better overcome their differences. He also touched on economic cooperation between Athens and Ankara.

» “We have an agreement”

Twenty-one cooperation agreements in fields as diverse as technology and tourism were signed during the Turkey-Greece High Level Cooperation Council.
Ministers signed agreements boosting trade, investments and shipping and the two countries will hereby extend their cooperation in projects concerning infrastructure works and transnational transport networks.
Relations between the two countries in the field of immigration will be governed by a bilateral agreement which provides for readmission of illegal immigrant flows to Turkey and cooperation in the fight against organized crime, trafficking and civil protection.
Both sides agreed to improve tourism cooperation, aiming at increasing their market share in countries with economic potential such as China, as well as raising global awareness on matters of cultural heritage protection.

Special attention was given to education and synergies concerning research. Environment protection and joint ventures in energy projects including renewable energy sources and the existing Turkey- Greece-Italy gas pipeline were also sealed with respective deals.
In terms of strengthening bilateral ties,  a Joint Political Declaration on the establishment of the High Level Cooperation Council as well as a Protocol on regular political consultations between the two countries’ foreign ministries were signed.

» Signing the Olympic Truce

Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan concluded on Saturday his landmark visit to Athens by signing the Olympic Truce initiative.

At a brief ceremony in front of the imposing Panathenaic Stadium, Erdogan referred to the “great honour in signing my name in this book; to put my signature for a world of peace.”
Papandreou said that Turkey’s support for the idea sends out a clear message “by Turkey and Greece to the world,” adding that Greece will actively support Istanbul’s bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games.
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

The destiny of Greek Tourism

» Expected Recovery

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) According to a survey conducted by the Academy of Tourism Research and Studies, Greek tourism will recover this year, with tourist arrivals expected to rise by 8.6%, compared to 2009.
The report by ATEM predicts that foreign tourists visiting Greece will reach 15.5 million in 2010, on condition that there is an upturn in world’s economy.

Greek National Tourism Organisation: www.gnto.gr

» Alternative Tourism

Exploring caves, rafting and trekking is just a small part of the activities offered to tourists who do not like crowded vacation destinations and choose alternative tourism.
More examples include medical tourism – which started in Ancient Greece – as well conference and wedding tourism (accommodations, transport, beauty treatments, flower arrangements, and much more).
A conference titled “New Trends in Tourism: benefits & prospects for women,” organised by the Thessaloniki Organisation for Women’s Employment & Resources (TOWER), aims at presenting and discussing various new trends in tourism. Topics to be explored include eco / agro-tourism, health & wellness tourism, and raising awareness about career opportunities available for women in tourism.
See also Greek News Agenda: Alternative Tourism