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In the Region of Attica,

  • We have ascertained and assessed the gaps and failures of the Tourism Promotion Programme,
  • We have established scientific standards, entrusting them to a State University,
  • We have created the Directorate of Tourism, with the appropriate human and technical capital,
  • We ensure that the aforementioned personnel receives appropriate training on a regular basis,
  • We have brought together basic scientific tools towards modern and rational tourism promotion
  • We have designed and currently starting to implement the Strategy for the Promotion of the Region of Attica in a democratic and equitable way, allying ourselves with public tourism bodies, the municipalities of Attica and all private actors involved.  
  1. Appointment of Regional Councillors: at the end of 2014, Mr T. Aggelopoulos and Ms E. Dimopoulou were appointed Regional Councillors for Tourism, by decision of the Regional Governor of Attica, thus putting into action the Directorate for Tourism that had been left unstaffed for an extended period of time. We have reviewed and taken into account the state of affairs regarding tourism promotion, which had hitherto been implemented through a mammoth project approved under the NSRF 2012-2015 and pursuant to a EUR 8.5 million contract with McCann, which was set to expire in September 2015. The said project has been rationalized and extended by two months in order to yield the best possible results and deliverables for the Region of Attica.
  1. Directorate for Tourism and the Department of Tourism Promotion: as far as the staffing and functioning of the Directorate for Tourism and the Department of Tourism Promotion are concerned, it has been done gradually and continues to this day, in an attempt to ensure the maximum possible effect with the minimum possible human resources. The Directorate for Tourism currently consists of the Director, the Head of the Department and three highly qualified employees’ a minimal and insufficient provision for the country’s greater region.
  1. Organisation of a two-day seminar on Marketing and Promotion in February 2015, free of charge for the attendants, i.e. the elected officials and public officials involved in tourism, thus creating a first communication and cooperation network between the elected officials and the public officials from all of Attica’s municipalities to jointly implement promotional activities over the next five years. As a result, a network of accredited journalists, elected officials and public officers was created throughout all municipalities of Attica in the field of tourism.
  1. Study and design of a Strategy to effectively promote the Region of Attica. The project, amounting to EUR 19.680, was awarded to the Department of Business Administration at the University of Patras and was assigned to the Assistant Professor Mr D. Koutoulas, who, drawing on his competence and sense of responsibility, contributed to the creation of a very important toolbox in the hands of the regional government. This was achieved within five months, in cooperation with public officials and with political guidance. The study and actions already implemented concern the following:
    • Evaluation of the former Communication Plan (OPEES).
    • Drafting of specifications for the establishment of a Destination Management Organisation (DMO)
    • A detailed strategic action plan for the promotion of the Region of Attica, including costed actions and a timetable for their implementation during the period 2016-2020.
    • Training for the staff of the Directorate for Tourism on modern techniques of tourism marketing, implementation of the action plan and issues pertaining to the administration and organisation of tourism promotion.
  1. Establishment of a framework for cooperation among the various services responsible at local, regional and national levels (Ministries, local and regional authorities, and  tourism  organisations), i.e.:
    • the Ministry of Economy, Development, and Tourism,  the Ministry of Culture, the  Ministry of  Shipping and Island Policy, the Greek National Tourism Organisation (EOT), the Piraeus Port Authority S.A. (OLP), the City of Athens, the Municipality of Piraeus, the municipalities of the Saronic islands, Marathon, Elefsina, etc., as well as UNESCO Hellas, Athens-Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association (EXAA), the Hellenic Association of Travel & Tourist Agencies (HATTA), The Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE),the Hellenic Professional Yacht Owners Association (EPEST), and the Pan-Hellenic Federation of Tourism Enterprises (GEPOET),
    • airlines (Aegean Airlines, Turkish Airlines) Tourism consultants, Greek and international tourism promotion agencies, as well as Athens International Airport,
    • press journalists of Greek as well as international media, Travel channel, the BBC, D.W., etc.,
    • workshop on tourism, to address issues such as joint communication actions, common institutional and administrative problems, involving the participation of all Regions of Greece,
    • participation in fairs and exhibitions at home and abroad, interviews and press articles. Acting in the context of the Integrated Programme for Tourism Promotion of the Region of Attica, and initiating careful, corrective actions, the Region of Attica participated in Filoxenia 2014 and 2015, in the Greek EXPO Tourism 2014, in ITB Berlin 2015, in WTM London 2015, in Poseidonia 2015, and in The East Med Yacht Show–Poros 2015, represented by both political and administrative parties calling for the establishment of BTB relationships with international tourism agencies,
  • interviews on TV broadcasts, in major international and Greek tourism media (Travel Channel, DW etc.) by which the tourism product of Attica shall be made known throughout the world,
  • an article by El. Dimopoulou published in the newspaper “Avgi” on 16-1-2015 (i.e. during the election campaign) in relation to tourism strategy in the Region of Attica (http://www.avgi.gr/article/5222238/pos-sxediazoume-ton-tourismo-stin-perifereia-attikis).

7.   Creation of cross-sectoral tourism committees first established in May 2015, with the participation of the Mayors of all regional units and the Regional Councillors for Tourism, to address specific issues and problems relating to tourism development and promotion in a democratic, transparent and equivalent way, thus offering valuable information and cooperation towards the implementation of the said project.

  1. On 30-11-2015, at a workshop open both to specialized audiences and the general public, the regional strategy for tourism promotion over the next five years was formally presented. Today, the Region of Attica and all its municipalities are in possession of the Strategic plan for the tourism promotion of the Region of Attica, as it was put forward on 30-11-2015, the date of expiry of the previous project on tourism, thereby ensuring that not a single day is wasted!
  1. Consultations are currently held between the Region of Attica and its municipalities, to be completed on 16-1-15. Therefore, we are about to deliver scientific and serious results in relation to the Tourism Promotion of Attica at international level, for years 2016-2020. Most of Attica’s municipalities have already been in contact with us in order to maximise the benefits, not only in terms of increasing the number of visits to Attica’s treasures, but also leading to a comprehensive and durable cultural and touristic intervention, the benefits of which are expected to be spread evenly throughout the entire social fabric of Attica.
  1. The above Project is to be implemented gradually, to avoid waste of time and to ensure Attica’s communication policy in the critical first half of the year.  Therefore, we shall proceed to call to tender for the Promotion of Attica in the first half of 2016, while, subsequently, through the invitation to tender for an integrated promotional plan for years 2016-2020. The project is to be entrusted to multiple contractors, according to the type and specifications of individual promotional actions.

An outline of our objectives for the touristic promotion of Attica over the next 5 years shall be as follows:

  • to promote all possibilities of Attica throughout the whole year and the whole geographical area   (it is scientifically known that Attica has no seasonality),
  • to promote Athens — Attica as a short break destination (in addition to a city break destination) with the appropriate proposals for individual new tourism products that will gradually contribute to increasing the number of visits and the average stay,
  • to promote the “unknown” and “authentic” side of Attica, by highlighting specific destinations, for instance Piraeus, the Saronic islands, Eastern and Western parts of Attica, i.e. places which add significant new elements to the Region’s cultural environment,
  • to promote Attica on a smart, modern and contributory basis,  by investing in effective actions rather than in some advertising of doubtful or obsolete profitability without any direct or measurable benefits.
  • to promote the Region of Attica in cooperation with the Greek National Tourism Organisation (EOT), both in Greece and abroad, but also in cooperation with the country’s municipalities and regions, thus maximising the benefits and saving resources and human resources by avoiding overlapping,
  • to cooperate directly and indirectly with national or international key players in tourism (e.g. social partners, airlines, the Athens International Airport “El. Venizelos”, etc.), in order to jointly raise Attica’s profile in this field.

Eleni Dimopoulou

Executive Regional Councillor for Tourism Promotion

Region of Attica

Political scientist

MSC Tourism Management

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