Tourism Ministry Discusses Challenges Facing Travel, Tourism Companies

Muscat, The Ministry of Tourism today held a meeting via video-conferencing on the implications of coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic on travel and tourism companies. The meeting held to discuss the challenges facing these companies and their commitment to regulating precautionary measures.

The meeting was chaired by Ahmed bin Nasser al-Meherzi, Minister of Tourism, in the presence of Qais bin Mohammed al-Yousef, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry(OCCI).

The Minister of Tourism affirmed that the meeting comes in light of the keenness of the Sultanate’s Government to resume work in the economic sectors, including the tourism sector. He said that travel and tourism companies are one of the pillars of this sector that provides integrated products to tourists. He added that the meeting comes to listen closely to the proposals in order to minimize the severity of the effects imposed by the pandemic, in addition to esnuring that the sector is ready to resume work.

Qais bin Mohammed al-Yousef, OCCI Board Chairman praised the active role played by the Ministry of Tourism by interacting with partners in the sector to find solutions for this crisis, dealing with the expected effects, granting incentives to the sector and submitting these proposals to the Supreme Committee entrusted with studying scopes for a mechanism to handle developments resulting from coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic

Al-Yousef stressed the importance of the coming period, in which the date for resuming flights will be made known, so that travel and tourism companies can develop their plans and programmes. He highlighted the need to provide support by hotel establishments to local travel and tourism companies operating in the Sultanate compared to the incentives offered to international travel companies.

The meeting discussed the regulation of work in travel and tourism companies, setting standards for competitiveness in the market, and creating a unified system to be followed by travel and tourism companies through the formation of a committee emanating from the Tourism Committee at OCCI, which will contribute greatly to addressing the challenges facing these agencies due to the uniqueness of the travel and tourism offices.

The participants in the meeting also touched on many demands that included restructuring loans for travel and tourism companies, paying the financial dues of these companies by various institutions in the state, in addition to providing incentives by airlines and hotel establishments, exemption from the rent dues incurred on these companies by landlords and providing an opportunity for tourist companies and offices to refund the travel tickets that were not used by passengers due to the suspension of flights.

Source: Oman News Agency