Coronavirus pandemic denting tourism, hospitality sector at astonishing pace: Industry body

Kolkata, Apr 6 () The cascading effect of theglobal coronavirus pandemic is crippling the country's tourismand hospitality industry at an "astonishing pace", an industrybody said.

Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTA) has come down by about67 per cent annually in the January-March quarter, while fordomestic tourists, the figure is lower by nearly 40 per cent,according to statistics published by the tourism ministry, theIndian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) said.

"Disruption due to coronavirus could result in 18-20per cent erosion of nationwide occupancy across thehospitality sector, and 12-14 per cent drop in average dailyrates (ADRs) for the entire 2020," ICC Director General RajeevSingh said.

The travel and tourism sector alone accounted for 9.2per cent of India's GDP in 2018, and generated 26.7 millionjobs in that year, the ICC said in a statement.Advertisement

"Most of the tourism companies afflicted by thepandemic are now anxiously looking for interim relief to payEMIs, taxes and salaries to employees for at least sixmonths," Singh said.

The industry body also recommended a host ofinitiatives for the central government, including extendingthe RBI's three-month moratorium on repayment of term loans tosix months and a complete GST holiday for the tourism, traveland hospitality industry for the next 12 months.

"ICC recommends setting up of a 'Travel & TourismStabilisation Fund' with direct benefit transfer to each unitto prevent financial loss and consequent job loss," thestatement added. BSMRBT RBT