Full transcript of the Greek Prime Minsters speech as the Tourism 2020 event – “The Greek summer is a state of happiness”

Kyriakos Mitsotakis attended the event to present this year’s tourism promotion campaign , as the economy and society are gradually returning to normal and Greece is opening up to tourism.

The country’s ambition is to attract as many visitors as possible to a very difficult year, taking advantage of its internationally upgraded image due to the successful management of the pandemic.

The Prime Minister noted that this summer will be different from the previous ones, because Greece will continue to offer its beauty but at the same time the health protocols that have been drawn up, with the protection of the health of all, employees and visitors, must be observed. to be an absolute priority.

Our friends from all over the world “will come to a Greece that will be the same, but at the same time different. It will be different, because first of all, the basic health protocols must be strictly adhered to, as they have been determined by the competent Ministries, so that, above all, we can all operate safely. Protecting public health, the safety of visitors and the safety of tourism workers remain our first non-negotiable priority, “he said.

Emphasizing one of the messages of the campaign, Kyriakos Mitsotakis pointed out that Greece is not only the sun and the sea, but a perception that goes beyond the summer months.

“During these vacations, we will appreciate much more the concept of freedom, as we have been consciously constrained for weeks to protect our individual and collective health. In other words, this summer will be an opportunity to see things differently. What we want to communicate is that summer is not just a season, it is a perception, a look at things. So, this look at things can accompany us all season long, “he said.

The Prime Minister said that the number of visitors this year will be significantly reduced. However, he stood by the long-term dimension of the message for Greek tourism, noting that the goal is the special feeling of the Greek summer to “reach” those who will not be able to visit our country this year.

“This year the number of visitors who will come to our country will be significantly reduced compared to the 33,000,000 who came last year. How reduced we do not know, no one can make any accurate predictions. There will be people who would like to come to Greece and they will not be able to do so either because for some reason they will not be able to come or because they will not be able to afford it. But this is a campaign that not only invests in 2020, but also looks further, sees in ’21, sees in ’22 “, he said.

Mitsotakis: We are always ready to add more weapons to our quiver
Addressing tourism professionals, whom he welcomed for their many years of contribution, Kyriakos Mitsotakis reiterated the government’s firm message that it will protect jobs, adding that it is ready to provide further support to the industry and related sectors if needed.

“And I want you to know that we stand by you whenever we judge and evaluating in a dynamic way the measures we have taken, we are always ready to add more weapons to our quiver, we will have data very soon. And here we are, if necessary, to adapt our strategy and further strengthen the branch of Tourism and of course the relevant branches, of Catering, Culture, Sports “.

Theocharis: The opening of tourism is done with a plan
The event was prefaced by the Minister of Tourism Haris Theocharis, who stressed that the opening of tourism is done with a plan, based on inviolable European data on safe airports, applying strict health protocols to protect public health, but also with strengthening the health system. for the benefit of all.

“The soul of Greece has never closed, it has remained and remains an open invitation, with its heart beating incessantly, non-stop, everywhere, in all lengths and breadths of the Earth,” said Mr. Theocharis. “This night belongs honorably to Greek tourism, it belongs to the people of Greek tourism,” he added.

Steve Vranakis: Greek summer is not a time of year, it is an emotion
“Greek summer” is not a time of year or just the sun and the sea, it is an emotion that is inspired by joy, laughter, nature, our loved ones, said the creative leader in her presidency. government, Steve Vranakis, who played a central role in planning the campaign .

He stressed that the spirit of the new campaign also aims to expand the tourist season, so that it is not characterized by seasonality but covers the whole year.

Mr. Vranakis noted that the philosophy behind the promotion of Greek tourism is in line with the character of the leadership shown by the Greek government in the management of the pandemic. “In recent months, the leadership shown by the Prime Minister and his team has set an example to the world on how to manage a situation of this magnitude.” he said.

“The decision to act quickly and the security measures implemented immediately led to a dispersal rate and a number of deaths among the lowest in the world,” he said, adding that his goal was to continue this successful project, taking advantage of the collective success of Greeks.

“We aspire to create a lasting anticipation”
Referring to the philosophy of the campaign, Marketing Greece CEO Ioanna Dretta spoke of a “message of optimism and hope in the rest of the world”, adding: “A simple message, with light, sounds, memories or desires. Simple and unpretentious.
As befits Greece. Modest and in moderation. As the times demand. That respects the unprecedented state of the whole world. A message full of empathy for what we went through and where we are now. ”

The message, according to Ms. Dretta, speaks of the unique experience called the Greek summer: “Because the Greek summer is a state of happiness.” Wherever you are. Whatever you do. We, too, aspire to create a lasting anticipation. To build a new brand. A wish that can be fulfilled when, for each one, the conditions allow it. Greek summer will always be here ”

The logic of a simple and meaningful campaign
The new Greek tourism campaign entitled “The Greek Summer a State Of Mind” has as its main goal to remind the international travel public of the experience of the Greek Summer which is not limited to the sun and the sea, but contains something deeper, more true, more human. And that is the feeling of freedom, happiness and anticipation for the best days to come.

With prudence, empathy and respect, the new film highlights this uniqueness of Greece and aspires to create a new brand around its name, that of the Greek Summer. A brand that at this stage urges the public to live wherever it is, promoting the human dimension of Greece, the one that shares, the one that understands, the one that is ready to welcome you with the right conditions. Behind this dimension and the sharing of man’s need to live his own Greek Summer, opportunities are created at the same time for next year. For the next step. For the development of the campaign at a later stage.

The whole speech of the prime minister
“Ministers, ladies and gentlemen, let me start by saying a big thank you to the contributors to this effort, to the Ministry’s executives, to EOT, to Marketing Greece, to Steve Vranakis, to the advertising companies that supported this production, which took place in a relatively short period of time and certainly in a very special, very difficult time.

It is certainly an exaggeration to say again that this year things are completely different from what we expected and this summer will be completely different from what we were planning. The pandemic has changed many things. It has changed the way we perceive the importance of our health. It has brought about a deep, hopefully temporary, economic crisis. It made us all re-evaluate priorities, the way we live, the way we work.

We know very well that the tourism industry is the one that has been hit hardest by this pandemic crisis. Virtually everyone in the world has stopped traveling. Countries have closed their borders and the tourism industry has essentially paralyzed. But all that is starting to change.

In Greece we managed well to face the first wave of the pandemic. We did well because we all worked together and listened to the advice of experts, and the whole of Greek society was drawn up behind an organized plan. We have shown a new collectivity and a new confidence in the state, which is nothing different from our own collective expression.

And it is precisely this success in tackling the pandemic that has allowed us to gradually return to the new economic order, gradually releasing – and always following the advice of experts – various branches of economic life. And of course, the most important branch of Tourism could not be excluded from this process. A sector on which the Greek economy is multi-dependent.

We have talked and presented in detail – and you know better than me – what our plan is for the gradual release of the entry process into the country. How do we start on June 15 by accepting flights from countries, from airports rather to be more precise, which are on the European list of EASA with low epidemiological load. These visitors will be able to come to the country and be tested only. And from July 1, we hope to be able – and will be able – to extend this opening to most, in almost all countries if we do not have unpleasant surprises, and to move back to a new reality where we will do targeted sampling tests.

They will come to a Greece that will be the same, but at the same time different. It will be different, because first of all, the basic health protocols must be strictly adhered to, as they have been determined by the competent Ministries, so that, above all, we can all operate safely. The protection of public health, the safety of visitors and the safety of tourism workers remain our first non-negotiable priority.

We have the great advantage that we are actually out in the summer. We are in open spaces. And all the experts tell us that the chances of transmitting the virus outdoors are dramatically reduced. This does not mean, however, that we should not treat this different summer with the necessary responsibility and care. I will insist very much. I know I’m talking to people who are professionals in Tourism and have supported tourism for many decades now, having made Greece this tourist destination. Above all, employees in the tourism industry must strictly adhere to individual protection measures.

We will be strict in our controls at this level, because it is the least we can do to protect the hundreds of thousands of workers who will be employed in the tourism industry throughout the summer.
In the summer, then, we are gradually but optimistically opening the doors and windows of Greece to the world. We do not advertise and we are not proud of our success in dealing with the health crisis.

We present Greece as a destination that one can begin to see through a different perspective. I really found the spot very inventive, having had many discussions with the executives of the Ministry of Tourism and with Marketing Greece and Steve Vranakis, what is Greece in this world who is facing this so different and so great challenge. And it’s definitely more than just the sun and the sea.

This summer vacation – which maybe everyone needs this year more than ever – is an opportunity for collective and individual reflection on what our priorities are. During these vacations we will appreciate much more the concept of freedom , as we were consciously limited for weeks to protect our individual and collective health. In other words, this summer will be an opportunity to see things differently. What we want to communicate is that summer is not just a season, it is a perception, a look at things. So, this look at things can accompany us throughout the season.

Of course, one can also experience this – what I can tell you sounds a bit oxymoronic – without necessarily visiting Greece. I say this because we know – let’s not hide behind our finger – that this year the number of visitors who will come to our country will be significantly reduced compared to the 33,000,000 who came last year. How reduced we do not know, no one can make any accurate predictions. There will be people who would like to come to Greece and they will not be able to do so either because for some reason they will not be able to come or because they will not be able to afford it.

But this is a campaign that not only invests in 2020, but looks further, sees in ’21, sees in ’22. He sees in the potential that we have and that we all need to work together this difficult year to get through as best we can. And to prepare the great counterattack of Greek Tourism, well done and since we have finally finished the pandemic, from 2021 onwards.

And it is precisely this image of a country that can combine logic with emotion, seriousness and professionalism in dealing with an unprecedented crisis with this feeling of relaxation, joy, happiness that I believe the Greek summer offers to all of us, this the image is what we want to transmit abroad today.

We will not do many things. We will support our campaign with a very specific message and I believe that we will respect what Ioanna said, the need to be simple, Doric in this difficult time, in this difficult time for the whole planet. This is not a time for fanfares, nor for big words. But we know what we can do, we know what we have to do and we know what we should not do.

I want to address, closing, especially to the employees in the field of Tourism. I fully recognize that today the dominant feeling in the country after the satisfaction, which I believe we justifiably received from dealing with the health crisis, is the uncertainty, the fear of what will happen this summer, where our economy will go, what will be the household incomes, people who are addicted to Tourism, what will happen in the winter, how people will be able to make ends meet.

I want you to know that as a government we have done our best to support the world of work. And all the schemes we have proposed, especially the “Collaboration” scheme, are aimed at just that. And I want to encourage, once again, tourism professionals to take advantage of these schemes so that they can retain as many jobs as possible this summer. This is our top priority.

And I want you to know that we stand by you whenever we judge and evaluating in a dynamic way the measures we have taken, we are always ready to add more weapons to our quiver, we will have data very soon. And here we are, if necessary, to adjust our strategy and further strengthen the branch of Tourism and of course the relevant branches, of Catering, Culture, Sports.

But, above all, the responsibility we have to manage at the moment is a collective responsibility. The state is doing its best with an unprecedented package of financial support for the Greek data, to support the world of work and the real economy and liquidity of businesses. The Guarantee Fund program, which was announced just yesterday, has already received too many requests. There is a need to support business liquidity, and the return on investment and the TEPIX program and the emblematic program of the Guarantee Fund were and are aimed at this.

And of course we will do everything in our power – and announcements will be made soon by the Ministry of Tourism – to support domestic tourism. This year is an opportunity for our fellow citizens who can and want to take a vacation, to rediscover the beauties of our homeland and to see the Greek summer through a completely different look.

I wish and hope this spot is a good trip. The tourist season should go as well as possible in this difficult, extremely difficult, unique situation. From the first moment we avoided setting quantitative goals and making accurate predictions about the height, the size of the economic recession we had before us. Of course, the data of the first quarter, which were announced today by ELSTAT, in the great economic pain that the whole Greek society is experiencing today, were relatively – I emphasize this – relatively encouraging.

A recession of 0.9% when the average European recession is 3.8% for the first quarter of 2020. This tells me, but also anyone I think has common sense, that the Greek economy has faced the crisis. of the jokes with great momentum, that January and February were very good months and March was not as bad as they expected. The second quarter will obviously be a very, very difficult quarter for the Greek economy and we hope that from the third quarter things will go better.

We hope, then, that we hope to be able to welcome visitors above all else safely. Above all, safely, which is our first priority, but to give them the opportunity in this special summer to enjoy the Greek summer and the experiences it offers and to see Greece through a different perspective.

And this summer, the summer of 2020, for reasons perhaps different from those we would have imagined three, four, five, six months ago, when the campaign was planned for how we imagined things would be, to be a summer that for other reasons, but equally optimistic reasons, will be truly unforgettable.

Thank you very much and I wish you good luck in this tourist season “.

Source – iefimerida.gr 

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