Tourism industry should get 6 months relief in debt repayment, exemption in GST : ICC

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The tourism industry, which contributes 9.2 percent to India’s GDP and employs 2.67 crore people, is near annihilation by Coronavirus today. A major industry association for the tourism and hospitality sector has demanded a six-month relief in debt repayment, one-year exemption in GST from the government and also release of a special fund for the sector.

The Confederation of Commerce of India (ICC) has said that most tourism companies affected by the corona virus epidemic need interim relief from the government for at least six months in EMIs, taxes and staff salaries. ICC Director General Rajiv Singh said, “Due to the corona virus epidemic, bookings for the entire year have decreased by 18-20 percent in 2020, while the average daily fare has come down by 12-14 percent.

Relief measures

The industry association has sought a series of reliefs from the central government, including extending the loan repayment proposal by RBI from three months to six months and complete exemption in GST for one year for tourism, travel and hospitality sectors. “The ICC has suggested the creation of a Travel and Tourism Sustainability Fund, which transfers direct benefits to prevent financial loss and employment cuts,” the ICC said in a statement. The industry association said in the statement that the travel and tourism sector contributed 9.2 percent to India’s GDP in 2018 and provided 2.67 crore jobs that comes to 8.1% of India’s total employment.

Indian tourism worst hit

According to CII, Indian tourism has been worst hit by coronavirus in all geographical segments. With Indian government cancelling all visas and people cancelling all their pre bookings, CII said that the tourism sector “will be worse hit”. Also FTA(foreign tourist arrival) in march dropped 9.3%  month -on -month basis and 7% year-on-year basis.

World tourism also affected

If the pandemic continues for more months, the World Travel and Tourism Council, the trade group representing major global travel companies, projects a global loss of 75 million jobs and $2.1 trillion in revenue.

Number of corona virus patients reached 17,265 in the country, 543 deaths so far

For the tourism industry summer is a propitious and profit making season. However, with the cases crossing 24lakh worldwide with 6 lakh above recoveries and 1 lakh above deaths, darkness will still hover upon the tourism industry. In India the total number of cases have reached 17,265 with 543 deaths. The number of people recovered has reached 2,547. According to the data released by the health ministry, 1324 people have tested positive in the last 24 hours.

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