Hospitality industry estimates loss of 3.8 crore travel jobs; seeks PM Modi's urgent intervention
New Delhi: With the hospitality sector getting affected badly due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH), the nodal agency and policy federation of all the national associations representing the tourism, travel and hospitality industry, has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi stating that the tourism industry is in dire straits because of the pandemic.
"With declining revenues, almost all tourism businesses are running out of working capital. However, with the responsibility of staff and payment of their salaries, EMIs to service, advance tax, PF, ESIC, GST, excise and other state levies, bank guarantees, security deposits, this industry needs your support now more than ever," stated the letter written by industry veteran Nakul Anand, executive director, ITC and chairman of FAITH.
In the letter, FAITH has requested for a complete GST tax holiday for the tourism, travel and hospitality industry for 12 months. "With almost nil revenues there is hardly going to be any GST collection," the letter stated.
FAITH further maintained that as a result of this pandemic, the Indian tourism industry is looking at pan-India bankruptcies, closure of businesses and mass unemployment. "It is believed that around 70 per cent out of a total estimated workforce of 5.5 crore (direct and indirect) could get unemployed (3.8 crore). This effect of job losses and layoffs has already begun throughout the country," the letter added.
The federation has also requested for a 12 months' moratorium on EMIs of principle and interest payments on loans and working capital from financial institutions besides a doubling of working capital limits on interest-free and collateral-free terms. "This will prevent all our tourism businesses from going bankrupt," FAITH stated in its letter.
It has also sought a support fund for 12 months on the lines of MNREGA to support basic salaries with direct transfers to the affected tourism employees.
Meanwhile, Dipak Haksar, chairman of CII's national committee on tourism and hospitality has also written a letter to P K Sinha, Principal Advisor to the Prime Minister, listing some recommendations for the revival of the sector.
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