Kathmandu: The Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Yogesh Kumar Bhattarai has said that Nepal’s tourism industry has suffered gross monthly loss of 10 billion due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Minister Bhattarai said so on Thursday while addressing a virtual program hosted under the coordination of Pokhara tourism council to discuss about the minimum tourism prospective conditions, its branding and future strategies.
Minister Bhattarai further said that the adverse effect of Covid-19 was so widespread that even the government’s Visit Nepal 2020 campaign which was launched with great preparations had also failed.
However, the Minister hinted that it was time to look for alternative tourism by gradually opening permits for trekking and mountaineering and resuming domestic as well as international flights.
While speaking during the same virtual workshop, the Chief Minister of Gandaki state Prithvi Subba Gurung said that it was time to focus on promoting domestic tourism by adopting appropriate safety measures.
Chief Minister Gurung further pointed out that despite Covid-19 pandemic the alertness against this contagion is good in Pokhara which has made it possible for trekking, adventure sports and rural tourism to pull on.
Saying that the Gandaki government is about to release a relief package worth one billion for the tourism sector in the immediate future to sustain the tourism, the Chief Minister stressed on the need to mobilize tourism since Gandaki province has already suffered a huge loss of 27 billion.
The other participating state minister Bikash Lamsal said that Pokhara is the best destination for adventure tourism which should be branded.
Other participants also opined that it was time to promote domestic tourism and also create new destinations to push forward tourism in the country by taking into account the situation of Covid-19.
Mayor of Pokhara Metropolis Man Bahadur GC also talked about Metropolis’s tourism related development plans for future.
The virtual workshop also collectively concluded to build a consensus among the tourism operators in the next virtual session to push forward the tourism industry in the context of post Covid-19 circumstances in the country.
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