ATHENS, May 30 (Reuters) - Greek tourism revenues could increase by up to 10 percent in 2011 after two years of sharp decline, a senior industry official told Reuters on Monday, in a rare piece of good news for the debt-choked country.
The recession-hit country depends heavily on its beaches and monuments for any economic recovery, with the tourism sector accounting for about 16 percent of GDP and employing roughly a fifth of the country’s 4.26 million workforce.
“If there are no surprises — as the publicity Greece is getting (about the debt crisis) is not helping — we expect a rise in revenues near 10 percent,” the head of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE) Andreas Andreadis told Reuters.
“It might not be 10 percent, but it will be close to this figure,” he said, adding that revenues would climb thanks to a rise in arrivals due to the global economic recovery and unrest in competitor destinations Egypt and Tunisia. (Reporting by Renee Maltezou; Writing by Ingrid Melander; Editing by David Stamp)