The creation of a network of recreation infrastructures at tourist ports across Greece would serve the need for a smart adjustment of the country’s tourism product to the effects of climate change, to say nothing of the growth prospects it would offer, diaNEOsis argues in a report that will be presented on Tuesday at an event in Athens.
The think tank’s analysis shows that the Greek economy could enjoy benefits of up to 2.86 billion euros through 2031 from the development of 5,164 mooring berths for leisure boats.
These berths can transpire simply by constructing and operating 30% of the marinas that are already foreseen in zoning plans. After 2031, the new berths would contribute, directly and indirectly, €602.7 million to the economy and maintain 8,422 jobs on an annual basis.
Even in a more reserved scenario, with 15% of the berths planned actually materializing, the benefit for the economy would still be considerable, as it would amount to €1.57 billion in the coming decade, with the annual economic benefits after 2031 at €332.9 million and 4,652 permanent jobs created.
The report points out that the chosen areas for a large number of tourism ports have been marked but the construction stage has not proceeded for many, while there are also a number of marinas that have been built but have never been put into operation. Consequently only 22% – or 37 out of the 168 marinas per the zoning plans – operate today. Out of the 27,512 planned berths only 30.9%, or 8,499 are operating, and out of the 62 marinas already constructed only 23% are available for mooring (just 37.1%).
To meet the targets mentioned above, diaNEOsis proposes a new strategic plan comprising a series of actions contributing to the optimum and most efficient organization and management of marinas, and the increase in revenues and jobs in the sector.
The diaNEOsis analysts consider two initiatives as being the most important: The assessment of the network of already scheduled facilities according to the zoning plans to ascertain what is feasible, and changes to the concession tender process for marinas.
This article was previously published at ekathimerini.com.