Summer 2021: Greece's Covid-19 odyssey (part 1)

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Summer has begun in Europe: restrictions on travel are ending, beaches and bars are beckoning, and Greece is particularly keen to fill them all with holidaymakers. Greece is the European country that relies the most heavily on tourists for its national wealth. In non-Covid times, the sector generates a fifth of Greek GDP and employs one in six workers. But the sector has been rocked by the pandemic, this after a decade of austerity and financial crisis from which businesses and banks have still not entirely recovered.

As Greece tries to stage a grand international reopening, FRANCE 24’s Europe Editor Catherine Nicholson and her team take viewers from north to south, from the mainland to the islands.

We speak with MEP Maria Spyraki from the governing party to discuss Greece’s response to the Covid crisis.

And we meet Constantine Michalos of the Athens Chamber of Commerce to discuss how Greece’s economy can rebound in the post-Covid world, where tourism will have a huge role to play.

We take a closer look at tourism in our first report, as Greece hopes its Zero Covid Islands can encourage international tourists to return.

The other major challenge for Greece since 2015 has been its position as a destination for large numbers of refugees and migrants. After years of poor housing conditions on the Greek islands for people arriving, we visit one of the new camps being built. It’s being funded by the EU to the tune of €250 million. Back on the mainland, we meet a refugee who says she’s losing faith that she’ll ever be able to build her life in Europe due to increasingly hostile policies.

See also  Budget 2018 pensions: Did Philip Hammond completely IGNORE pensioners in his Budget?

>> Click here to watch part two of the show

Show presented by Catherine Nicholson, produced by Johan Bodin and Mathilde Bénézet, filmed on location by Stéphane Bodenne, with Luke Brown and Céline Schmitt.

In partnership with the European Parliament

The action was co-financed by the European Union in the frame of the European Parliament’s grant programme in the field of communication. The European Parliament was not involved in its preparation and is, in no case, responsible for or bound by the information or opinions expressed in the context of this action. In accordance with applicable law, the authors, interviewed people, publishers or programme broadcasters are solely responsible. The European Parliament can also not be held liable for direct or indirect damage that may result from the implementation of the action.


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