KATHMANDU, JANUARY 19

Finance Minister Bishnu Prasad Poudel has urged entrepreneurs of the tourism sector to be confident that the business environment in the country will surely improve once the COVID vaccination kicks off.

He also pledged that the government would provide assistance to revive the tourism sector, which has been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

During a meeting today with representatives of the tourism industry at the Ministry of Finance, Finance Minister Poudel said that emphasis will be laid on effective implementation of relief, concession and incentive programmes brought by the government.

Stating that he is taking the lead in resolving the problems seen in the implementation process of programmes mentioned in the budget and monetary policy, he said that he would facilitate and assist in case of need. He also expressed confidence that the situation will be better after the arrival of vaccine against COVID-19 infection.

He mentioned that further discussions will be held regarding the demand for exemption of electricity demand fee for tourism businesses as well.

On the occasion, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Bhanubhakta Dhakal said that the ministry has held discussions with the concerned stakeholders to solve the problems in tourism sector. He also mentioned that the private sector should also understand the difficulties faced by the government during the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the tourism stakeholders have demanded that the repayment period be extended to three years from the maximum of two years as stated in the business continuity loan disbursement procedure, and to five years from the maximum repayment period of four years mentioned in refinancing provision.

They have also requested the government to make arrangements for exemption of electricity demand fee and for issuance of loans of up to 100 per cent of the value of collateral already deposited for any existing loan.

The meeting was attended by representatives of Nepal Tourism Board, Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal, Hotel Association Nepal and other tourism-related associations.