THASL, SLAITO to submit proposals to Govt. | Daily News


 

Following EU grant of Euro 3.5 mn for tourism industry:

THASL, SLAITO to submit proposals to Govt.

Minister Prasanna Ranatunga in discussion with EU and Tourism officials.
Minister Prasanna Ranatunga in discussion with EU and Tourism officials.

The Tourist Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (THASL) and the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators (SLAITO) will shortly submit proposals to the Government on how to develop the beleaguered tourist industry.

This follows the European Union Ambassador in Sri Lanka presenting to the Government a grant of Euro 3.5 Million on Wednesday, pleased with the manner in which the Government handled the Covid 19 pandemic.

“We had a meeting with our Association members yesterday and a large number of ideas were already exchanged where we could submit to the Minister and the Ministry but we need to understand what the Terms Reference are, so that we know what to tell the Government, “ THASL Chairman Sanath Ukwatte told ‘Daily News Business’ yesterday.

Meanwhile, the SLAITO Chairman, Mahen Kariyawasam too said that he was meeting his Association members at a meeting this morning which will deliberate on what proposals to provide the government.

The European Union has offered Minister of Industrial Exports, Investment Promotion Tourism and Aviation Prasanna Ranatunga, a grant of Euro 3.5 million to resurrect the beleaguered tourism industry.

EU Ambassador to Sri Lanka Denis Chaibi has requested Minister Ranatunga to submit the requisite proposals which will match up to the grant which was made at a meeting between the two yesterday. (19) The EU Ambassador also said that the EU was very pleased with the efforts that the Government had taken in the combat of the virus and also that the grant was a measure of goodwill of the EU to resurrect the already beleaguered Sri Lankan tourism industry.

The Minister, while expressing his thanks on behalf of the Government of Sri Lanka for the EU Grant, directed the Chairperson of the Tourism Promotion Bureau Kimarli Fernando to submit the proposals to the EU Ambassador expeditiously.

According to tourism statistics, the arrivals to Sri Lanka at the time that the curfew was imposed on March 19, was 71, 370 and 60% were from the EU.

Minister Prasanna Ranatunga also drew the attention of the meeting to the fact that one of the priorities of the Government was to increase its foreign exchange earnings and to develop the economy. The Minister while stressing that the despite the tourism industry had collapsed the world over, he said that all the possible steps would be taken to combat all the negative effects which took place due to COVID 19 to achieve the set targets.

 


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