Greece, a global force in tourism


Santorini tourism

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has named Greece as one of the top global tourism players among 49 other countries such as France, the US, Spain, the UK, Germany, Mexico, Italy and Austria, with the largest number of tourism arrivals in 2016 while supporting one in 10 jobs.

“Greece is the 10th largest global force in tourism among OECD countries, a ‘breath’ away from the 9th -Austria – undoubtedly a huge national success of the country’s tourism sector,” said former Greek Tourism Confederation President (SETE) Andreas Andreadis.

According to its report, Tourism Trends and Policies 2018, Greece welcomed close to 30 million, up by 7.5 percent compared to 2015 at 26.1 million, marking record arrivals for the fourth consecutive year. Overnight stays also rose last year to 193.4 million up by 2.9 percent against 188 million in 2015. Domestic tourism meanwhile, accounted for 5.8 million trips, while cruise travel remained stable at 5.1 million in 2016.

The same OECD report claims that direct tourism GVA (gross value added) last year came to 9.6 billion euros, representing 6.4 percent of the overall GVA while supporting 366,000 jobs with employment in tourism rising gradually between 2012 and 2016. Indicatively, in 2016, accommodation accounted for 365,892 employees, hotels for 79,615, food & beverages for 72,238, transport services for 261,484, rentals for 3,921, and tourist agencies for 20,872.

The Greek tourism ministry allocated 49 million euros in 2016 for tourism, 26 million coming from the regular budget, public investment accounting for 10 million, and 13 million from EU co-financing.

GCT Team

This article was researched and written by a GCT team member.