KATHMANDU: Nepal Association of Tour Operators (NATO) has called upon Government of Nepal to bring forth a plan to save 1.05 million jobs in the COVID-19 hit tourism industry, that are in danger of being lost, some permanently.
Compared to other sectors affected by the pandemic, tourism stands out as the only one that has been ‘decimated’, says the organisation. Accordingly, NATO has tried to draw GON’s attention to the fact that tourism-related businesses have now been operating on negative cash flow since late March 2020 and fears the situation cannot be sustained for long.
It fears that the road to recovery will be long and drawn-out with traveller number reaching 2019 levels only in 2024, if at all, given the government support is provided.
In a statement released Sunday, the organisation shed light on the fact that 6.3 million of the citizens depend directly or indirectly on earnings from the tourism sector on a daily basis, assuming that each worker in the travel industry in Nepal supports 6 family members.
With this situation in hand, NATO shared that these job losses would be a permanent loss, even when tourism begins to revive and travellers start to come back gradually.
NATO is an umbrella association that comprises membership from a large cross-section of the tourism industry including tour operators, hotels and airlines.