Tag Archives: Finance Minister

FHRAI requests FM’s intervention in Rs60,000 crore loan guarantee scheme not yet notified

FHRAI has submitted a representation to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman requesting her intervention for notifying the Rs60,000 crore sanctioned under the Loan Guarantee Scheme for COVID-affected sectors that was announced on June 28. The Association has stated that neither the operational guidelines nor any other details of the scheme have been announced by the Ministry so far.

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IATO delegation meets Finance Minister, thanks her for relief measures & seeks more support

Rajiv Mehra, President, IATO and Pronab Sarkar, Immediate Past President, IATO met with Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance Minister, in her office to thank her for the recent announcements for revival of tourism and also to seek support from the government on issues like SEIS, TCS, GST, ECLGS and export industry status. A communication from IATO mentioned that the meeting was historic and fruitful. On issue of ECLGS, she said that revised rules and guidelines are being issued to the banks. On the other issues raised by the IATO representatives, she gave a very patient hearing and assured to look into their suggestions/recommendations favourably based on its merit.

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Recognised entities being supported by FM’s relief measures is good: Rupinder Brar

Thanking the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and Tourism Minister for announcement of relief measures for the tourism sector and taking up issues concerning the industry, Rupinder Brar, ADG, Tourism, said, “We welcome the financial help for tourist guides and tour operators. It is also good that the recognised entities are being supported. The support that has come in terms of visa being announced free for the first 500,000 e-Tourist visas that will be applied for, will be a gamechanger. It sends a positive signal to the whole word that India is getting ready to open, the vaccination drive has picked up, number of cases are going down. Through this, we also want to send a message to the industry that please get recognised, so that you can be benefitted by any of the schemes of the government.”

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‘Good move by FM, but more should have come for tourism sector’: Jyoti Mayal, President, TAAI

Jyoti Mayal, President, TAAI, has said that it’s a welcome move by the Finance Minister to announce package or relief for the travel agents and the tourism people, especially the tourist guides, who are registered on the MOT website. “However, I still feel that more should have come for the tourism sector, which is really suffering a huge cash flow crunch, seeing low business and are not even looking at any business coming and reviving quickly. I think more needs to be done, as the 10% which will be useful to some of the smallest players, will not go far for the majority. Hence, the industry in general, has not been helped. However, it’s a small light at the end of the tunnel. We are also looking at the ECLGS scheme and we hope that something more will be added to it. In addition, SEIS would be another perspective that would be looked at. Hence, let’s hope there is some more coming and we keep our fingers crossed that whatever they have announced will be distributed easily and doesn’t just remain on paper. We need ease of getting that amount also. Overall it’s a good move and we are looking for more and I hope it’s the beginning to get more respite,” she added.

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TCI applauds Finance Ministry for relief measures to revive tourism

Madhavan Menon, Managing Director, Thomas Cook India Group, welcomes the announcement by the honourable Finance Minister, Sitharaman, saying, “This is a much needed step towards the revival of tourism – a sector  that is a significant contributor to the GDP, foreign exchange receipts and employment generation – with a cascading force multiplier effect on allied sectors. The three-pronged approach for the sector covers 100% guarantee for loans up to Rs 10 lakhs per government recognised Travel & Tourism stakeholder (TTS), up to Rs 1 Lakh financial support to over 11000 licensed guides at a state/regional level, and 5 lakh gratis visas that will serve to catalyse much needed inbound inflows.  The stimulus announcements reflect the government’s focus on the travel and tourism sector and augurs well for the industry, while simultaneously building consumer confidence in travel.”

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Finance Minister announces relief measures for travel and tourism

Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance minister, Government of India, has announced financial support to more than 11,000 registered tourist guides/travel and tourism stakeholders through the loan guarantee scheme for COVID-affected sectors. The scheme will cover 10,700 regional level tourist guides recognised by ministry of tourism and those recognised by state governments. It will also cover travel and tourism stakeholders (TTS) recognised by Ministry of tourism. Loans will be provided with 100 per cent guarantee up to Rs 10 lakh for TTS and Rs 1 lakh for tourist guides licensed at regional or state level. She also said that the first five lakh tourist visas that will be issued – once issuance is restarted – for free. These announcements are part of eight measures declared by the centre as relief for the COVID-hit national economy.

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FM’s relief for tourism, aviation & hotels with ECLGS

Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman has announced Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme 2.0 (ECLGS) for the 26 stressed sectors identified by Kamath Committee, which include tourism, aviation, hotels & restaurants. Under ECLGS 2.0, banks would be able to provide collateral-free, fully guaranteed loans to borrowers on capped interest rates. It supports companies with outstanding dues of Rs 50-500 crore as on 29th Feb, and they would be able to borrow up to 20% of their outstanding dues as on 29th Feb, with a loan tenor set at 5 years. Also there will be a one-year moratorium on principal repayment. The scheme will be available till March 31, 2020.

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New MSME definition includes services sector, shall benefit tourism: Yogendra Tripathi

While the tourism industry was disappointed with the sector not being mentioned in the stimulus package announced by the finance minister, Yogendra Tripathi, Secretary – Tourism, Government of India, has said that the new definition of MSME, which has removed the differentiation between manufacturing and services sector MSMEs, shall benefit tourism as 70-80% of the sector falls under MSME. “Throughout my tenure, I have been hearing from the industry that 70-80 per cent of the stakeholders in tourism fall under the MSME category. The biggest announcement under Atmanirbhar Bharat programme was pertaining to the MSMEs. Hence, we have clarified to the industry that the biggest announcements are there for them as well. The fact that the differentiation of definition between the manufacturing and the services sector MSME, which has been removed and the caps which have been changed for the services sector MSMEs, like tourism sector MSMEs, shall bring benefits. It’s not just the benefits which have been given, but it also further expands the scope of the tourism industry, to be part of the MSME definition and to take the benefits, which are due under the MSME category of Atmanirbhar Bharat announcements. I believe that the industry has started understanding that because they are now bringing out 1-2 difficult areas wherein the tourism industry may not get the kind of benefits it has been expecting. We are bringing up those difficulties to the appropriate authorities to see if we can resolve them, so that more benefits reach out to the MSME tourism industry,” he said.

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MOT puts forth industry requests to Finance Ministry to avoid losses: Rupinder Brar

Rupinder Brar, Additional Director General, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, has revealed that they have put forth the industry representation and requests in front of the Finance Minister, so that they can work towards reducing the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on businesses. “The industry stakeholders need working capital and they are looking at interventions either from the banking sector in easing out of norms, or they will be looking at support through reduction of taxes. These are the things that would leave money in the hands of the industry as of now. We would be carrying out or taking with us the representation of the industry and the thrust would be that the industry needs to survive so that job losses do not happen. I would refer to the honourable PM’s speech to the nation, where he has himself mentioned that we should make sure that we don’t stop wages of anyone. Hence, all the efforts of the Ministry of Finance would be to ensure that no such job losses happen in the tourism and hospitality sectors.”

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Kerala to cut tax on aviation fuel to 5 per cent for domestic airlines

To promote airlines to extend their service to Kerala, the Kerala government has decided to slash the tax on aviation fuel to 5 per cent from the current 28.75 per cent for domestic airlines. Making the announcement in the assembly during the discussion on the state budget for 2019-20, state’s Finance Minister TM Thomas Issac said that not only airports under the UDAN scheme but also non-UDAN airports would get the new tax breather in the state. “The tax on ATF will be reduced to 5 per cent from the existing 28.75 per cent for domestic airlines operating service from the state airports. A revenue loss of Rs 100 crore is expected through this,” he said. The tax cut is expected to benefit Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode international airports as the government had already decided to levy only 1 per cent fuel tax from airlines operating service from the newly commissioned Kannur airport. Aviation fuel accounts for a major portion of operating cost for airlines. The tax cut can help become Kerala an attractive destination for various airlines as neighboring states like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are charging a state tax of 29 and 28 per cent, respectively on jet fuel. The tax cut benefits would benefit only domestic passengers as the international airlines that operate to and from the state have not been charging VAT as per the new GST regime.  

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