Three months have passed since Coronavirus hit China’s Wuhan province in December last year and as the deadly virus reaches Indian soil, Modi government seems to be clueless about the negative impact of the outbreak on the Indian tourism industry.
In reply to a question regarding the damage suffered by the Indian tourism industry due to the outbreak, the Modi government in Lok Sabha said that no such assessment has been done so far.
“Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has not undertaken a study on the effect of the spread of Corona Virus on Indian Tourism Industry,” said the government in reply to the question pertaining to the loss incurred by the tourism industry.
While the government said that an advisory has been issued to the travellers, it informed the lower house that the e-tourist visa granted to Chinese nationals have been suspended.
According to the data provided by the Central government, China stands third after the United Kingdom and the United States in availing e-tourist Visa facility provided by India. As per the government record, 228945 (provisional) Chinese nationals availed E-tourist visa facility during 2019 to travel to India.
However, industry professionals believe the coronavirus outbreak has brought the tourism industry to a standstill.
“Bookings are being cancelled. People are not stepping out due to the scare and wary of long quarantine,” said an employee working in the hospitality sector.
A report released by the CII on the coronavirus outbreak in China and its impact on India predicted a negative impact of the outbreak on the industry.
The Indian tourism industry and tour operators will incur significant losses due to cancellations from China and other countries. Outbound tourists from India are also cutting back on travel, projected the report that was released last month.
As far as the world economy is concerned, according to an Oxford-based economic forecaster, the outbreak of the deadly virus in China may cost $ One trillion.
“Oxford Economics warned that the spread of the virus to regions outside Asia would knock 1.3% off global growth this year, the equivalent of $ One trillion in lost income. The consultancy said its model of the global economy showed the virus was already having a “chilling effect” as factory closures in China spilt over to neighbouring countries and major companies struggled to source components and finished goods from the far east,” reads an article published by the British newspaper the Guardian.
In China alone, as per the latest data, over 2,981 people have died due to the virus with the total number of confirmed cases mounting over 80000.
Worldwide, more than 3, people have died due to the infection and about 94,000 people have been confirmed positive after the test.