- Urge for clarity in government decision-making process
- Point out responsibility of reviving tourism cannot be shouldered by single authority
- Say combined effort essential in reviving tourism
As authorities continue to explore avenues to welcome international travellers amid the pandemic, the tourism industry is of the view that required is a clear set of protocols to ensure all stakeholders are on the same page.
Speaking to Mirror Business, representatives of the travel and tourists industry welcomed the move taken by the authorities to help revive the hard-hit industry, however, they expressed the need for clarity in the decisions taken.
Sri Lanka is expecting a group of Ukrainian tourists to arrive in the country via the airport in Mattala today and tomorrow after a group of Russian tourists, who were scheduled to arrive in the country through Bandaranaike International Airport yesterday, abandoned the tour.
The officials said this is carried out as a pilot project to re-open the country for tourism after Sri Lanka closed its borders temporarily for tourists in late March. Acknowledging tourism is a combined effort, the industry representatives shared that a more coordinated effort is a must so that the shared responsibility of ensuring the safety of the tourists and making certain they receive the desired experience is handled in a suitable manner.
As there is an array of tourist touch points from the point of arrival to exit, industry representatives stressed that the responsibility cannot be taken over by a one single authority but must be a coordinated and a shared effort.
Furthermore, although much hype was created in opening the airport come January, COVID-19 Task Force Head Army Commander Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva last week announced that government has not decided to completely reopen airports as yet given the recent developments in the virus outbreak across the world.
As of now, a final decision on the complete reopening of the airport will be taken only after 19 January 2021.