Reactions of Hospitality and Travel Industry Leaders on Budget 2020
The proposed budget included the allocation of Rs. 2500 crore for tourism promotion, the establishment of an Indian Institute of Heritage and Conservation under Ministry of Culture.
FINANCE MINISTER Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2020-21 on February 1. The proposed budget included the allocation of Rs. 2500 crore for tourism promotion, the establishment of an Indian Institute of Heritage and Conservation under Ministry of Culture. FM also announced the development of five archaeological sites which includes: Rakhigarhi (Haryana), Hastinapur (Uttar Pradesh) Shivsagar (Assam), Dholavira (Gujarat) and Adichanallur (Tamil Nadu).
Here are key post-budget reactions by industry leaders:
Surendra Kumar Jaiswal, President, Hotel and Restaurant Association of Northern India(HRANI)
"The Union Budget 2020-21 is a progressive document to ensure economic growth. Measures for enhancing investment climate, boosting transport infrastructure and education and push towards digitalization will spur tourism and hospitality sector. The proposal to develop iconic sites with on-site museums is a welcome measure to boost tourism. Besides, the proposal to establish more airports and monetise 12 lots of highway bundles of 6,000 km by 2024 will lay the framework for enhancing the attractiveness of India as a tourism destination."
Vineet Verma, CEO Executive Director, Brigade Hospitality Services Limited
"With the allocation of 2,500 crores in the tourism budget, and the state governments being requested to develop tourism roads maps, which the centre will support is very encouraging. For tourism is one of the largest employment generators and has the potential to place India among the top five tourism destinations in the world, the announcements made at the Union Budget will have a significant impact on the overall growth of the sector."
Rahul Chaudhary, CEO and MD, CG Hospitality and CG Corp Global
“The tourism industry's proposed Budget allocation of ₹2,500 crores for the financial year 2020-21 is very encouraging. With the growth of tourism comes the creation of jobs. While the Tourism sector contributes almost 10% of India GDP, expected to create employment growth of 10% annually. State governments have been given more incentives to promote infrastructure and heritage sites through the UDAN and Tejas schemes which will further link less travelled locations which have the potential to become very attractive circuits. Most importantly, the new personal income tax regime would put higher disposable incomes in the hands of the individuals which would certainly also go into the tourism sector."
Sonica Malhotra, Joint Managing Director, MBD Group
"Announcement such as development of archaeological sites and world-class museums at five identified sites and allocation of Rs 2,500 for tourism promotion will not only further enhance the country’s ranking on the Tourism Competitive Index but will also generate huge employment opportunities and give a big boost to the spread of our rich culture and heritage all across the world. Also, the development of 100 more airports under UDAN scheme by 2024 and construction of 12 more highways will further boost connectivity and provide a significant boost to the tourism and hospitality sector."
Vijay Dewan, Managing Director, Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels Ltd and Chairman of CII West Bengal State Council
“It's a balanced budget, where the government has taken measures by allocating Rs. 2,500 crores for tourism promotion in FY21 in order to support the Incredible India initiative. The vision of the government to invest in the tourism sector will be a great push for the hospitality sector. India's heritage and culture-rich experiences have always attracted tourists to the country and the government's plan to develop five archaeological sites at iconic sites with on-site museums will attract more tourists from India and globally. The plan to develop 100 new airports will significantly help in building tourism infrastructure and will drive tourism growth.”
Sarbendra Sarkar, Founder and Managing Director, Cygnett Hotels and Resorts
"The government's push for infrastructure development by building more airports and as also the announcement of new Tejas trains will boost tourism outside the main centres. this, in turn, will have a positive impact on the hotel sector. We are building hotels in many new locations and with this kind of infrastructure development, we will surely be a gainer."
JB Singh, President and CEO, InterGlobe Hotels Private Limited
“The Union Budget 2020 largely lays emphasis on the development of various sectors including transport, aviation, tourism and majorly infrastructure. With Rs. 1.7 lakh crore being allotted for transport infrastructure in terms of expansion of highways, new Tejas trains and 100 more airports getting announced, we expect seamless travel between tier II and urban cities. The initiatives to develop five new smart cities, as well as building archaeological sites with on-site museums, will open new avenues and experiences for visitors and boost travel."
Preety Arora, Head Business Strategy, Amatra Hotels & Resorts.
“Budget has given the Indian hospitality sector the requisite boost by its initiative of developing museums in five archaeological sites. This would aid in creating the much needed social infrastructure around these locations and boost employment opportunities as well. New properties and resorts will come up in these locations and cater to these travellers. Also, the allocation of Rs 2,500 crore for tourism promotion in this fiscal would abet in attracting domestic and international travellers to various locations in India. These initiatives would surely give the much-needed push to the Indian Hospitality and Tourism sector.”
Sanjeev K Nayar, General Manager, WelcomHeritage Group
"Initiatives like adding 100 more airports by 2024 under the Udaan scheme will help to improve connectivity across the country and manage to cater the significant growth in the number of flyers thus giving impetus to the burgeoning domestic travel. WelcomHeritage being a heritage hospitality brand has always supported the developments that can benefit the cultural heritage of India and by allocating Rs 3,100 crore to Cultural Ministry, we expect more promotion of India’s vast rich culture and heritage. The government is also looking to develop five archaeological sites as iconic sites with on-site museums in Haryana, UP, Gujarat, Assam and Tamil Nadu, which is a good move, which will attract the tourists across the world. The budget also promised to enhance the road connectivity by constructing 2500 access control highways, 9000 km eco-development corridors, 200 coastal and port roads, 2000 km strategic highways along with the Delhi-Mumbai expressway and two other corridors, which are to be completed by 2023. Overall the budget is very satisfactory and will positively impact the growth of the travel and tourism sector."
Roop Pratap Choudhary, Managing Director, Noor Mahal
“This budget is certainly a booster for the promotion of India’s heritage, tourism, and rich cultural diversity. This will provide flourishing ground for the hospitality sector. Rs 2500 crores allocation for the promotion of tourism industry would further strengthen the sector and help in generating more employment opportunities. Although a more liberal and reasonable investment and loan framework were expected from this budget. In the near future, we expect a more flexible and tolerant financial environment from the government to give small hospitality players to explore more growth avenues.”
Jurgen Bailom, CEO and President, Jalesh Cruises
"We welcome the government's initiative to allocate Rs 2500 crore for tourism promotion. Being one of the key drivers of growth and the third-largest forex earner for India, this initiative will further create employment growth and strengthen the tourism industry at large. We believe that India is poised for a quantum leap in the space of tourism which will contribute to the GDP growth in the coming years".
Rajesh Magow, Co-founder and CEO-India, MakeMyTrip.
"Some laudable initiatives in preserving and promoting India’s rich cultural heritage including the recreation of existing museums and setting up of new tribal and maritime museum will definitely improve the country’s position amongst heritage destinations, globally. Additionally, development of five iconic archaeological sites across Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu comes as a strategic step towards boosting domestic and inbound heritage tourism to these states. As home to young talent, the proposal to set up an Indian Institute of Heritage puts a spotlight on the need for training and empowering talent with knowledge around archaeological disciplines – an absence of which is a deterrent to the growth of cultural tourism in the country. The establishment of this university can be seen as one of the many first steps of the Government in increasing contributions of academia to the sector."
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