Pre Budget-Quote : Yogesh Mudras, Informa Markets India
“The hospitality sector, which employs millions of people in the country, has proved to be a resilient one, while continuing to be challenged by the peaks and troughs of the pandemic. With the Union Budget due to be presented on 1st of February, people are eagerly waiting for the Finance Minister to announce benefits and exemptions for industries affected due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. This includes the hospitality sector, which is looking for incentives and lower taxes. According to industry data, more than 24 lakh people lost their jobs in the hospitality sector, after over 25 percent restaurants were shut owing to protocols discouraging unorganised gatherings.
The hospitality sector has advocated for travel expenses to be made deductible under the Income Tax Returns in the upcoming Budget till the sector bounces back to its pre-pandemic days. The measure can also help Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) tourism to shift from low-cost destinations such as Southeast Asia to places within India. The Government of India’s tourism policy should strengthen and build capacity to provide better services and facilities to the tourists visiting the country. To kickstart inbound travel, the government should focus on opening international travel in a regulated manner. All the airports, railways and road transport should have adequate measures for public safety. Safety guidelines should be clearly defined to tour operators and hospitality operators.”
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