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Tourism incurs Tk 10b loss in 2021

Tourism yet to gain momentum despite reopening; it frustrates over poor disbursement from stimulus package

  • Special Correspondent
  • 22 August, 2021 12:00 AM
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Tourism incurs Tk 10b loss in 2021
Tourist sports at Cox’s Bazar yet to get momentum. This picture has taken on Friday by our Cox’s Bazar Correspondent Nasar Ahmed.

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The country’s tourism sector incurred around Tk 10 billion loss in 2021 due to second wave of covid 19 pandemic.

Tourism and theme parks of the country were closed from April 1, 2021 to August 18, 2021.

Saif Ahmed, president of the Bangladesh Hotel and Guest House Owners Association disclosed primary data of the losses of hotel, motel and theme parks.

He said some 600 hotels, motels and theme parks have incurred loss of Tk 15 billion. “The loss may cross in the current fiscal year as huge numbers of hotel, motel and guest houses have already been forced to close their businesses after failure to pay for their rented buildings,” he said.

He said around 80 percent of hotels and guest houses are running their businesses by rented houses.

“We have reopened our hotel, resorts, tourist spots, theme parks and community centres with its half capacity following hygiene rules from  last Thursday but response from the tourists is very poor despite offering maximum 70 percent concessions,” said Saif Ahmed.

Only few tourists visit at Cox’s Bazar and Kuakata tourist spots, he added. He said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has introduced Tk 10 billion stimulus package to revive the tourism sector.

“But I assure you that most of tourism businesses including me have yet to receive the package,” he claimed.

“How can you repay the loans after endorse loan in favour of you as your business become dull, bank responded to me when I approached to seek the PM support from a Bank,” Saif Ahmed said. He requested the concern authorities to disburse stimulus loans to proper businesses.    

He feared that it would be difficult for them to operate businesses in peak season to start from October to March next, if they don’t get support. The tourism and recreation centres of the country were closed from March 18 to August 16 last year. All tourist spots were closed again amid the second wave of coronavirus on April 1 this year.