Sitharaman holds meet with hospitality and tourism sectors

Sitharaman holds meet with hospitality and tourism sectors

New Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday held a meeting with representatives from travel, tourism and hospitality sectors to discuss various credit related issues with them.

The meeting was also attended by senior finance ministry officials and heads of various public sector banks (PSBs).

"Along with the FM, the meeting was also attended by MoS Finance Shri @DrBhagwatKarad; Finance Secretary; Secretaries for Financial Services, Economic Affairs & Revenue; chiefs of PSBs & IBA, besides senior officials from @FinMinIndia," the finance ministry said in a tweet.

It is to be noted that Budget 2022-23 had proposed to open an additional Rs 50,000 crore window under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) to support hospitality and related services sector.

"Hospitality and related services, especially those by micro and small enterprises, are yet to regain their pre-pandemic level of business. Considering these aspects, the ECLGS will be extended up to March 2023 and its guarantee cover will be expanded by Rs 50,000 crore to a total cover of Rs 5 lakh crore with the additional amount being earmarked exclusively for hospitality and related sectors," Sitharaman had said in the Budget speech. Besides, the Budget also proposed to extend the ECLGS by one more year till March 2023 and guarantee cover expanded to Rs 5 lakh crore from Rs 4.5 lakh crore.

This was announced as part of Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan package announced in May 2020 with an aim to provide relief to micro, small and mid sized firms hit the hardest by the pandemic.

Meanwhile, in the aftermath of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday said that never has the globe peace faced challenges of this significance since World War-II, and India's development is "challenged" by the recent events.

She said human welfare needs a conducive environment without any disruptions or disturbances to make the post-pandemic economic recovery sustainable.

"India's development is going to be challenged by the newer challenges emanating in the world. Peace is being threatened and after the Second World War, (a) war of this significance, this impact, on the globe probably is not felt," Sitharaman said.

She was speaking at the annual Asia Economic Dialogue organised by the Ministry of External Affairs and think-tank Pune International Centre.

"Hopefully, some kind of restoration of peace at the earliest will happen, based on which, recoveries can be sustainable," she added.

Fearing that the economic recovery not just in India but across the world will be "severely hampered", Sitharaman said the welfare of humanity requires the recovery to be sustainable without facing any disruptions.

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