Tuesday, 19 April 2016 16:53


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The interview of the eccentric Commercial Director and co-owner of the LCC Airline Company, that was published in the latest “VIMA of Sunday”, marks the beginning of a mega - war with the beautiful Deputy Minister of Tourism. Starting with the huge pressure his company is under, due to its growing fleet, at the same time he said many true things.

Tragic truths about the degradation of the HELLENIC TOURISM. The one that Helena Kountouras boasts that, along with the cruises, will reach 27.5 mil. TOURISTS this year, with disproportionately mismatched revenue of 15.0 billion Euros.

O'Brien’s assertions include, inter alia, the lack of proposals for the extension of the Tourist season in our Country.

At the same time, he says that the imposition of new taxes upon the Tourist product by the the current government, ignores the product per se, and aims to the “closing” of the assessment by our Lenders.

“We, he mentions, have submitted repetitive proposals with dozens of letters to the Deputy Minister, very few of which were answered, but to no avail.

Particularly, when, in his most recent letter, dated 03.18.2016, he mentioned the beginning of flight cancellations that RYANAIR will implement, starting with Kos, the Deputy Minister did not even reply, "because perhaps she was too busy with the exhibition in Miami."

He said that he constantly calls for reduced fees and taxes, barring high season, and exemption for the small Airports.

Because he says "it is better to have passengers without taxes, than taxes without passengers." Of course, even believes that many other airlines will accumulate their flights in July and August, whatever the adverse consequences.

He even abhors the sale of the 14 “Prime” Hellenic Airports to the German Fraport, which with only 1.23 billion Euros as purchase price and a number of other low revenues for HELLAS, will reap huge profits grabbing connectivity from companies such as Ryanair.

Of course, his hard commercial offensive against Fraport, also includes the pricing policy that this “so called” privatization will implement, being expensive for the Hellenic market, since the Germans would have a monopoly.

Besides, as he claimed "we saw the monopoly results in AIA, which is one of the most expensive airports in Europe and of course, instead of AIA receiving 18.0 mil. Passengers annually, when Ryanair only brings 2.5 million, being in the crossroad of many popular destinations.

On the other hand, Dublin, with 1.0 million inhabitants receives 25.0 mil. Passengers per year.

Besides, while his company represents 41% of the passenger traffic in HELLAS during the first semester, the government is denying the opportunity to basically bring more than 10.0 mil. passengers over the next three years, in fear of offending their corporate friends. It is obvious who he means!!

In summary, it is worth to underline that D. O'Brien will continue his hard fight with, according to his words, the "Marie Antoinette" of Hellas, the Deputy Minister of Tourism, and indirectly with the Minister of Tourism, Mr. Giorgos Stathakis.

And it is certain that it will gradually escalate, since "Marie Antoinette” actually knows her cake.

Will the Deputy Minister remain in Office, or has the time come for the Government to “let her go” soon?

Because we all know that the Almighty has always loved this Country, our Homeland and will hardly allow amateur experimenting with its fate by sorcerers’ apprentices.

The present Article has also been published in Greek, in the Greek version of Travel Daily News and in the English version of Travel Daily News International.