This year's revised target of gradual recovery for the tourism industry will be attained, Philokypros Roussounides, Director General of the Cyprus Hotel Association (CHA) told CNA, and referred to the challenges in the coming months, mainly due to lack of personnel and high inflation.
The CHA Director General said that, at the moment, the average occupancy for the month is around 80%. Most of the tourists come from abroad, but there is enough mobility from inland as well, he added.
Taking into consideration the circumstances after the war in Ukraine, "we are satisfied" he said. Of course the estimate and forecast were very different for this year before the war, Roussounides went on, but noted that "we adjusted the goal after the developments." The first target set was, according to CHA Director General, to have a better result this year than in the last one, so as to mark the gradual recovery of the industry, which should have been a rapid one otherwise. "It seems that we are very close to achieving it and we hope that tourism influx will continue in the coming months," he noted.
Replying as to whether they managed to overcome problems with the lack of personnel, Rousounides noted that this is a challenge that will hover over the industry for the next five years. "Beyond that, there are other huge challenges ahead, due to both rising energy costs and rising inflation, as well as supply chain issues." As he noted, all these present a mix of huge challenges which the industry will face in 2023, as they will significantly reduce the purchasing power of potential tourists in the coming season, while their savings cushion due to the pandemic will disappear. "We will do everything in our power to be affected as little as possible by that, because the tourism industry will certainly be affected", he said.
As for the problems the tourism industry is facing this year, he noted that several units, due to lack of staff, may not have been able to fully offer their services, in some cases restaurants remained closed, while a small number of hotels did not open.
The President of the Paphos Hotel Association, Thanos Michaelides, told CNA that despite the fact that Paphos in the past received a good portion of the arrivals from Ukraine and Russia, the region enjoyed arrivals from many other markets as well, so Paphos is less affected compared to other areas, particularly due to the large UK market. Michaelides confirmed that occupancy in Paphos region also stands at 80%.