Hoteliers seek government support

Kathmandu, April 23

The Hotel Association Nepal (HAN) — the umbrella body representing the country’s tourist standard hotels — has urged the government to immediately adopt special policies to prevent the hotel sector from collapsing due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Issuing a press statement today, HAN said that hotels across the country have been shut since long and are not being able to sustain workers, pay rental charge and electricity tariffs, pay bank loans and different other taxes to the government.

“In such a context where hotels are fighting for their existence, the government should immediately introduce a special policy whereby all these liabilities of hotels are deferred until the situation turns normal,” said HAN.

Citing that the tourism sector across the globe has been affected and is not going to be normal until the next few years, the government should provide special treatment to hotel sector whose business completely relies on tourists, as per HAN.

“Our business relies on tourists and we expect normal international flights only from January next year. As our businesses will be completely shut until then, the hotel sector deserves special care from the government,” reads the HAN statement.

Instead of continuing with the current tax and labour policies, the government should focus on special measures to sustain hotel businesses and the workers, suggested HAN.

As per HAN, investment worth billions of rupees in the hotel sector is about to collapse which the government should take note of.

“In a bid to support the country’s tourism and the entire economy, investors have injected billions of rupees in the hotel sector. However, their investment is on the verge of collapse due to the ongoing crisis. As hotels are the backbone of tourism and the tourism sector is the driving force behind Nepal’s economy, the government should immediately introduce special relief measures for hoteliers,” said HAN.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on April 24, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.