Greece has the largest share in tourism sector among EU countries

tourism industry

tourism industry

Border closures and travel restrictions imposed due to the coronavirus pandemic have meant that tourism is one of the first industries to be affected.

Mediterranean countries like Greece that rely on so heavily on the tourism economy are particularly hit during this time.

According to 2017 data released yesterday by Eurostat the tourism sector in Greece accounted for 26% of the employment in the business economy giving it the lead among EU countries.

Following Greece was Cyprus (20%), Ireland (14%), Croatia and Austria (both 13%) and Italy (11%) whereas only 4% of the persons employed in the non-financial business economy in Poland were active in the tourism industry.In 2017 there were 2.3 million enterprises in the tourism industries (these are economic activities providing an important part of their services to tourists, but also to non-tourists). This was more than one in ten of the EU’s non-financial business economy. The 11.7 million persons employed represented 9% of employment in the non-financial business economy and 22% of the services sector.

The tourism industries accounted for 3.7% of the turnover and 5.8% of the value added at factor cost of the non-financial business economy in 2017. Compared to other sectors, the tourism industries have relatively strong seasonality, with peaks in turnover in the third quarter (July, August and September) every year and a long-term upwards trend up to the last quarter of 2019 (the most recent data available).

tourism industry

More than half (56%) of the enterprises in the tourism industries in the EU were located in four Member States in 2017: 383 600 in Italy, 326 700 in France, 308 000 in Spain and 263 400 in Germany. Other countries with a large number of enterprises in the tourism industries are Greece (147 800), Portugal (120 200) and Poland (109 100).