EU's Breton: Coronavirus costs €1 billion per month to European tourism

FILE PHOTO: European Commissioner for a Europe Fit for the Digital Age Margrethe Vestager and European Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton attend the presentation of the European Commission's data/digital strategy in Brussels, Belgium February 19, 2020. REUTERS/Yves Herman

PARIS (Reuters) - The coronavirus outbreak, which is grounding Chinese tourists, is costing the European tourism industry around one billion euros per month in lost revenue, EU industry chief Thierry Breton said on Monday.

“Chinese tourists are not coming to Europe since January. It means two million (hotel) nights lost. That is one billion euros per month since January,” Breton told BFM television .

Europe’s tourism sector has benefited greatly from China’s economic rise over the past two decades.

Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten