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Greek tourism sector optimistic

07-04-2011 14:42 BJT

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Violent clashes in Athens earlier this week may have hurt Greece's image abroad, but tourism officials believe the sector will rebound this year.

Officials in the tourism industry forecast a 10 percent increase in tourist arrivals, crucial for the crisis-hit country where tourism accounts for one in five jobs and 16 percent of GDP. And if any impact is likely to be felt in central Athens, where most protest rallies have taken place, it was not visible from the thousands of tourists flocking to the capital.

But as local officials keep their fingers crossed that things will quieten down soon, some tourists say they're actually excited to be in Athens during such turbulent times.

A US tourist said, "My husband and I were not there actually for the riots but we had this trip to Greece planned for well over a year now and much to our surprise the riots occurred, and the tour company that we are over here on made certain they opted for the fact that they wanted our group's safety, that was pre-eminent, that came first. And so as a result they relocated our group to a very lovely hotel outside of Athens to prevent us from being in the center. However, just yesterday we moved to the Grande Bretagne and had a chance to see where the protests occurred and parliament, and to be able to really live history."



Editor:Liu Fang |Source: CNTV.CN

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