Montenegro Eyes Tourist Boom From Greek Crisis

01 Jul 15
Montenegro Eyes Tourist Boom From Greek Crisis

Montenegrin Central Bank says Greek financial crisis will not significantly affect Montenegro’s economy- and may even may bring more tourists to the country this summer.

Dusica Tomovic

The Central Bank of Montenegro

Montenegro’s Central Bank on Tuesday said there will be no major long-term impact on Montenegro if Greece is forced to leave the eurozone.

The Central Bank said analysis indicated that Montenegro remains in the group of countries that will not be significantly affected by the crisis because its banking system is not closely linked to Greece and trade levels are low.

“Montenegro’s banking system is not connected with the Greeks, and Montenegrin exports to Greece are insignificant,” the bank said.

The value of exports to Greece in 2014 amounted to 295,000 euros, the bank added, while Greek direct investments in Montenegro were worth only 234,000 euros last year.

Only one bank in the country operates with majority Greek capital.

On the other hand, Montenegro expects some positive spin-offs from the Greek crisis in terms of extra tourism.

“A number of tourists may give up travel to Greece, creating an opportunity to attract more tourists to Montenegro,” the Central Bank said.

Some local economists say imports from Greece will down as a result of the Greek crisis. In 2013, Greece topped the list of countries exporting products to Montenegro, together with Serbia.

On Tuesday, the Greek government requested a new bailout deal from the eurozone, just hours before it was due repay €1.6 billion to the IMF.

Greece is asking for a new two-year €29.1 billion aid deal from a bailout mechanism for eurozone countries.

The country is due to hold a referendum on the terms of the current bailout on Sunday with the government advising a “No” vote. Greece risks leaving the euro if most voters back the government in rejecting the terms of the current offer.

Source: Balkan Insight (Montenegro)