Senior delegates of India's apex Hospitality Association - Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) met G. Kishan Reddy, Union Minister for Tourism, Culture and Development of North-Eastern Region recently to welcome him and to highlight the urgent need for Government intervention for the revival of the Hospitality sector in India. The Association presented the Minister with a comprehensive wish-list of the Hospitality industry highlighting concerns and recommendations for the revival of the sector from the impact of COVID19. The FHRAI was represented by Pradeep Shetty, Jt. Hon. Secretary, and DVS Somaraju, Treasurer and Vinod Gulati, Executive Committee Member.
FHRAI has submitted presentations on the support required under EPCG and SEIS schemes, GST rationalization, policy reforms, enabling Ease of Doing Business, challenges faced by the industry from Copyright Societies and the amendments required in the Copyright Act, 1957 and on challenges faced from the Online Travel Aggregators (OTAs) and Food Service Aggregators (FSAs).
Shetty said, “We thank the Hon’ble Minister – G Kishan Reddy Garu for taking the time out to meet with us and the industry welcomes him as the new Tourism Minister. We briefed him on the ground realities of the Hospitality sector and have submitted a comprehensive representation recommending the topmost priorities for its revival. The pandemic has completely battered the Hospitality industry and in the wish-list presented to the Minister, we have highlighted the most immediate reforms required from the Government. The FHRAI has emphasized the need to provide support to the industry under EPCG and SEIS schemes, GST rationalization, granting infrastructure and industry status and other important policy reforms including Ease of Doing Business in the Hospitality Sector. We have also informed the Minister about the challenges faced by the industry from the Copyright Societies as well as from the OTAs and the FSAs.”
The Minister stressed that Tourism and Hospitality are one of the most important pillars for the nation’s growth and it will be his endeavour to ensure that the sector receives as much attention and support from the Government as possible. He assured focus on the issues highlighted by FHRAI to revive the tourism and hospitality sector from the devastating impact of the pandemic. He also promised wholehearted support of the Tourism Ministry to clear any bottlenecks and introduce reforms wherever possible to expedite the recovery and revival of the sector and in this regard assured to meet the industry stakeholders at regular intervals to seek their inputs. G Kishan Reddy also promised that the Ministry will come out with a National Tourism Policy shortly with a road map for the fast recovery of the sector.
Somaraju, said, “In addition to the economic crisis caused by the pandemic, the hospitality industry is battered with several complexities raised by external factors that are controlling a healthy business environment. We sincerely request the Government to offer us a helping hand and create a level playing field by devising appropriate policy reforms in collaboration with concerned ministries and authorities.”