ICC recommends ‘Travel & Tourism Stabilisation Fund’ to stabilise sector struck by COVID-19 outbreak

ICC recommends 'Travel & Tourism Stabilisation Fund' to stabilise sector struck by COVID-19 outbreak
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The cascading effect of the global coronavirus pandemic is crippling the country’s tourism and hospitality industry at an “astonishing pace”, an industry body Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) said, reports PTI.

The industry has also recommended a number of initiatives for the central government, including extending the RBI’s three-month moratorium on repayment of term loans to 6 months and an entire GST holiday for the tourism, travel and hospitality industry for subsequent 12 months.

“ICC recommends setting up of a ‘Travel & Tourism Stabilisation Fund’ with direct benefit transfer to every unit to prevent loss and consequent job loss,” the statement added.

Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTA) has come down by about 67 percent annually in the January-March quarter, while for domestic tourists, the figure is lower by nearly 40 percent, consistent with statistics published by the Tourism Ministry, ICC said.

“Disruption because of coronavirus could lead to 18-20 percent erosion of nationwide occupancy across the hospitality sector, and 12-14 percent drop in average daily rates (ADRs) for the whole 2020,” Rajeev Singh, Director General, ICC, said.

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The travel and tourism sector alone accounted for 9.2 percent of India’s GDP in 2018 and generated 26.7 million jobs in that year, the ICC said in a statement.

“Most of the tourism companies afflicted by the pandemic are now anxiously looking for interim relief to pay EMIs, taxes, and salaries to employees for a minimum of six months,” Singh said.

(Source: PTI News)

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