UNWTO Secretary-General and Greece’s new Tourism Minister discuss strengthened cooperation

PR No.: 15022

UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, and the new Minister of Tourism of Greece, Elena Kountoura, met on the occasion of ITB to discuss how to strengthen the collaboration between UNWTO and Greece (Berlin, Germany, 3 March 2015).

Rifai welcomed the priority awarded to tourism within the new government and the continuity of the tourism policy in Greece to ensure that the sector remains a fundamental contributor to the country’s economic growth and stability, and committed to continue supporting Greece in advancing its tourism sector.

“Greece is and will continue to be a leading tourism destination. We are very pleased to see how tourism is a priority for the new government and how there is a strong commitment to pursue current tourism policies, building upon the good results achieved by the sector and taking them further” said Rifai.

Mrs. Kountoura expressed her great satisfaction over the support for the Greek Tourism by the Secretary General of UNWTO and his team and asserted her commitment to the implementation of strategies aiming to further promote Greece as a tourist destination, in cooperation with such an eminent International Body as the UNWTO.

Rifai and Minister Kountoura discussed the prospects for tourism in Greece, with the Minister echoing the positive outlook for the sector in the country and stressed intentions to increase Greece’s engagement in the international tourism community through UNWTO, namely in attracting new markets. 

In 2014, Greece was one of the fastest growing tourism destinations in Europe and the world. International tourist arrivals increased by 23% to surpass 22 million while international tourism receipts grew by 17% to US$ 13.4 billion.

Tourism accounts for 20% of Greece’s GDP and employs 750.000 people, directly and indirectly.



UNWTO Senior Media Officer: Marcelo Risi
Tel: (+34) 91 567 81 60 

UNWTO Communications & Publications Programme
Tel: (+34) 91 567 8100 / Fax: +34 91 567 8218 

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