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Bangladesh - August 17, 2021

Tourism sector sees new ray

Tourist spots going to be reopened after a day

Golam Mostafa Jibon:As per the announcement of the government, the tourism industry is going to be reopened on August 19; the owners, traders and workers involved in tourism related businesses including hotels, motels, guest houses and restaurants have now started to see the ray of hope again.
Earlier, the government had been imposed a ban on visiting tourist spots since April 1 with a view to prevent massive outbreak of coronavirus infection.
With the withdrawn of the ban, the involved people have started to take preparation to recoup their losses incurred in the previous period due to closure of the tourism sector. They are now busy to clean and washing the sites. According to the sources, the tourism industry in Bangladesh, which is known as a green land of natural beauty, has immense potential in the world. This country of immense beauty has been attracted foreign tourists for centuries. The country’s overall economy is prospering by attracting foreign tourists. As tourism has been identified as an industry, the huge potential of this industry is being explored. At present, the number of tourists worldwide is about 145 crore. It is estimated that this number will exceed 200 crore by 2023. Besides, about 80 percent of the huge number of tourists will travel to Asian countries, if any disaster does not hit further. By 2023, the industry will employ 297 million people, contributing 10.5 percent to the global economy (source: WTTC). If Bangladesh can survive in this huge market, then the outline of the country’s economy can change with the help of tourism with all the modern architecture. But, all of these depend on the ongoing corona situation.
Due to impact of corona pandemic, the tourism industry except a few numbers was closed in every country. However, after the introduction of the corona vaccine in 2021, the tourism sector of the closed countries is getting fresh again. As the employment rate in the tourism sector is increasing every year from 2014 to the present, the contribution of the tourism sector in the total employment in 2024 is expected to be 1.9 percent. Many countries in the world earn a lot of revenue every year from various sectors involved in the tourism industry such as transport, hotels, motels, restaurants, resorts, airlines and other means of communication, which is more than the income from any other major industry.
Tourism has already been identified as the world’s largest foreign exchange earning sector. Tourism is the main source of export revenue for one-third of the world’s developing countries.
According to the World Tourism Organization, more than 100 million people worldwide depend on this industry for their livelihood.
Around $ 2 trillion was generated annually from tourism worldwide until February 2020. According to the statistics of credit card users in 2020, out of 200 cities in the world, about 24.7 million tourists visited Bangkok, also the capital of Thailand. Other popular cities in the world for tourists are located at Paris (France), Dubai (United Arab Emirates), Singapore, Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), New York (USA), Istanbul (Turkey), Tokyo (Japan) and other cities.
Abu Morshed Chowdhury, President of Cox’s Bazar Chamber of Commerce and Industries said, more than 500 hotels and motels, more than 700 restaurants and more than 3,000 shops were closed in the area for over four and a half months due to lack of tourists. It has caused of a business loss at around Tk 1,500 crore in hotels and restaurants. The traders are preparing to recoup the losses by launching business from August 19.”
“Meanwhile, most of the shops, shopping malls, malls, hotels and restaurants in Cox’s Bazar have been opened due to the relaxation of strict restrictions. Public transports are running on the road,” he added.
Abul Kashem Sikder, General Secretary of the organization said, “Millions of working people became unemployed due to government restrictions to prevent corona infection. At this time, the loss in hotels, motels and restaurants has been more than Tk 15,00 crore.”
Mahfuzur Rahman, Executive Director of Mermaid Beach Resort said, “At least 2.5 million tourists visit Cox’s Bazar, largest tourist spot, every year. Tourists did not gather as the beach tour was closed for so many days. Hotels and motels were closed. Now the investors are trying to reclaim the losses.”
Mukim Khan, general secretary of the Kalatali Marine Drive Hotel Resort Owners Association, said it was not possible to bring the corona infection situation under control in a short period of time. As a result, it is important to decide to keep the hotels and restaurants open throughout the year in compliance with 100 percent hygiene rules. Otherwise, the investment of lakhs of Taka will go in peril.
From tomorrow, a limited number of tourists and people will be given the opportunity to go to the beach. Everyone has to follow hygiene rules. The number of seats in hotels, motels, restaurants, tourist centers, resort community centers and recreation centers can be kept at 50 percent. There will be mobile courts and law enforcement agencies on the ground to monitor hygiene.”

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