Given the two days 7th Posidonia Sea Tourism Forum in Thessaloniki, Greece’s capital of the north – a conference and exhibition at the iconic Macedonia Palace Hotel, we had the chance of putting forward some issues and avoiding misunderstanding on this more than important shipping and marine tourism matter.
John Faraclas of www.allaboutshipping.co.uk stressed the following:
- Total improvement of infrastructure not only of Thessaloniki and the rest of northern Greece and Thrace, but that of Greece in its entirety so as to allow the smooth and ergonomic development of the sector. More specifically designated areas for cruise ports facilities all over the Greek mainland and the Greek islands – he mentioned at the end an example on Chios island and a project which is coming up from the Chios Marine Club.
- Arrangements of ports in north of Greece, Thessaloniki, Kavala and Alexandroupolis to share the Cruise sector, the Coastal/passenger/ro-ro services and cargo ships.
- New jobs onboard and ashore. In total we need up to 150,000 seafarers for Greek ships only. Cooks, waiters/waitresses, you name it. Add those ashore – for security, guides, controls…
- Once again Faraclas raised the issue to build a training ship!!!
- Facilitation of both passengers and companies when the ship calls at these ports. (immigration controls – with fully biometric equipment)…
- Shipbuilding sector in Greece is able to grasp the opportunity and build ships – Cruise ships, roro ferries and yachts. Scaramanga, Elefsis, Syros, Chalkis Shipyards and Perama are able to meet the new wave of modern cruise ships, roro/ferries and yachts.
- Andreas Stamatopoulos, Verginas TV’s News director, who was also present, raised the Marinas issue for boats and yachts.
- Given the forthcoming elections in Greece, Ms Tsorba emphatically stressed the issue whether politicians are aware of these needs and John Faraclas countered that they do not have the mentors within the parties to tell them how to do it and do it properly!!!! (Remember: If you don’t do it excellently, don’t do it at all!)
- He also mentioned that the “staff officers” of Greece’s government of new Democracy (centre/right) must work hard in this direction.
- Ms Tsorba also raised the issue of hydroplanes/sea plains
- The small daily mini-cruise ships also issue was mentioned given the “Kostandis” boat shown at the begining of this TV program. Hope this support the “PENETIS” Association.
Let’s hope that the “Delphi Economic Forum” – which just begun, and the “Luxury side of Greece” this weekend in Santorini (Cyclades), offers some solutions.
You can watch the live TV interview here below:
“You don’t have to be big to be beautiful” is one of John Faraclas’ mottos and this applies to small-medium cruise ships 1,000 to 2,500 total capacity (passengers and crew)…
We look forward to your comments.