EBRD supports sustainable tourism in Greece

By Olga Aristeidou

Greek bay and beach, sustainable tourism

  • EBRD and Greek Ministry of Tourism launch Pilot Destination Management Plans
  • Programme will be rolled-out in Rhodes and Santorini
  • EU-funded programme to support development of sustainable tourism

The EBRD is teaming up with the authorities in Greece to roll out a programme to promote sustainable tourism in two of the country’s most popular holiday islands – Rhodes and Santorini.

The European-Union-funded destination management planning initiative aims to help the island’s businesses and local communities develop responses to the challenges of tourism, including diversifying destinations, reducing the dependence on “Sun and Beach” model and combatting the threat of “over-tourism”.

The initial focus is on Rhodes and Santorini where the programme is supported by the Chambers of Commerce of Dodecanese and Cyclades. The programme is broadened by the development of a destination management guide for the preparation of similar plans in other destinations around Greece.

The plans will highlight the benefits and the challenges of tourism development and will provide a long-term strategy for each of the island destinations, identifying the necessary initiatives to continue tourism on sustainable terms and defining the roles of different stakeholders. In addition, a training guide will lay the foundations for extending relevant practices around the country.

The aim is to ensure that the destinations are developed, managed and promoted successfully, in a sustainable, long term, integrated way, with a clear focus on the needs not only of tourists but of businesses and residents as well.

The EBRD has been investing in Greece since 2015 to support the country’s economic recovery. Since the beginning of its operations, the Bank has invested over €2.7 billion in the country.