Cyprus tourism will feel the pinch in 2009

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Officials have said that tourism is expected to feel the pinch of global economic turmoil with an estimated 15 to 20% drop in 2009 bookings.

2008 saw a continuous drop in arrivals and revenue to Cyprus. The trend of what lies ahead, taking into account the extent of the international economic crisis, is “pretty ominous”, said Haris Loizides, head of Cyprus’ hoteliers association.

The industry wants a drop in airport tariffs, more support to the island’s airlines in bringing tourists to the island, preferential VAT rates and a cut in electricity costs.

“The indications we have speak of a drop of in advance bookings in the region of 15 to 20%.” Loizides told an annual meeting of the hoteliers’ association.

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