Tag Archives: Nirmala Sitharaman

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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‘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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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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No relief for travel & hospitality sector, MOT’s budget down by 18%

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman while presenting the first paperless Budget of the country focused on building infrastructure but unfortunately had no mention on tourism and hospitality industry apart from introducing Vista Dome coaches on tourist routes. The tourism budget too has been reduced by almost 18 per cent, from Rs 2,499.33 crore in 2020 to Rs 2,032.04 crore in 2021. Apart from proposing tax exemption for aircraft leasing companies and plans to monetise AAI airports in tier-II and tier-III cities, the aviation industry too didn’t receive any relief. The FM announced Rs 1.10 lakh crore for outlay of Railways and capital expenditure along with a National Railway Plan for 2030. Additionally, more economic corridors are being planned to boost road infrastructure and tax holiday for startups has been extended by one year. The FM also announced tax exemption for LTC

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Bring tourism under Concurrent List of Constitution, says FHRAI

Sharing his expectations on the impending Budget, Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Vice President, FHRAI, says, “We request Nirmala Sitharaman and Prahlad Singh Patel to bring tourism under the Concurrent List of the Constitution along with granting industry status to the hospitality sector. Lack of adequate support is impeding survival and revival efforts.”

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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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Indian Institute of Heritage and Conservation to be set up under the Ministry of Culture

Setting up of an Indian Institute of Heritage and Conservation with the status of a deemed university under the Ministry of Culture, has been proposed by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget speech. Prahlad Singh Patel, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism and Culture, has expressed his happiness with this announcement and has said, “The much-awaited Indian Institute of Archaeological and Conservation was announced in the Budget. This will enable trained, qualified persons to conserve manuscripts, including monuments, museums. All partner institutions will benefit.”

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Hike in FDI in aviation; infrastructure & railways in focus; 17 iconic sites expected; GST simplified

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the Union Budget today, where she shared that the Government will take steps to hike FDI cap in aviation. She also said that India will enter aircraft financing and leasing activities. For tourism, it was announced that the Government will build 17 iconic sites to encourage arrival of tourists in India. It was also mentioned that the GST process will be simplified. A massive railways modernisation programme will also be launched this year. Apart from that, the government will undertake strategic divestment of Air India and other PSUs this fiscal. They will also work towards consolidating non-finance central PSUs via mergers and raise foreign shareholding till maximum limit in PSUs. Government has set ₹1.05 lakh crore divestment target for Financial Year 2020. Government has decided to open Indian embassies and high commissions in countries where India doesn’t have a resident diplomatic mission, and under this scheme it has approved opening of 18 new embassies in Africa and will open four new embassies in 2019. Other highlights of the budget include—125,000 km of road to be upgraded over next 5 years at a cost of 802.5 billion rupees; expansion of Swachh Bharat mission to undertake sustainable sold waste management in every village; making of PAN card and Aadhar card interchangeable for ease of taxpayers.

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