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Business

Greece launches large-scale private scheme to lure tourists

An association of private business activists has started an unparalleled image campaign in Greece with a view to further boosting tourism in the cash-strapped nation. The scheme is also meant to fuel employment.

For the first time in its history, Greece on Tuesday launched an all-embracing PR campaign on the Internet in a bid to attract more tourists, particularly outside of the current holiday season, which is already going smoothly.

The initiative has been organized by Marketing Greece, an association of private market actors such as the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE) and the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels (HCH), supporting the Greek National Tourist Office (GNTO).

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The portal aims to advertise tourist attraction and services in an extensive way so as to make it easier for potential holiday-makers to find their way around the country. It specifically aspires to convince tourists that it's worth coming to Greece not just during the traditional tourist holiday season.

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Special off-season offers are directed in particular at travelers from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, the UK and Russia.

Marketing Greece Managing Director Iossif Parsalis said the full potential of the Greek tourism industry had not yet been tapped. "We'll show that our private initiative will be able to raise awareness among holiday-makers of our country's beauty and riches," he said in a statement.

Boosting tourism is also deemed crucial for easing Greece's unemployment dilemma. Last year, over 18 percent of all available jobs in the country were related to tourism, with experts saying that up to 360,000 jobs more could be created in the sector by 2019.

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