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Sunday, January 17, 2021

World Tourism Day: Plight of tourism industry amid pandemic

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Panaji: As travelling across the world had come to a standstill in view of the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year; the traveling industry has been adversely impacted. But with the gradual normalization and ease to travel, tourism industries across the globe are restarting their business with taking all precautionary measures and hoping for better revenue generation.

World Tourism Day this year focuses on “Tourism and Rural Development”. The theme encourages the celebration of the unique role played by tourism in job creation outside of the big cities. It also in a huge way helps in the conservation of cultural and natural heritage of nations.

“On this World Tourism Day, the COVID-19 pandemic represents an opportunity to rethink the future of the tourism sector, including how it contributes to the sustainable development goals, through its social, cultural, political, and economic value. Tourism can eventually help us move beyond the pandemic, by bringing people together and promoting solidarity and trust – crucial ingredients in advancing the global cooperation so urgently needed at this time,” the United Nations said.

Goa, being a tourist State, has certainly suffered losses due to the nationwide lockdown. Although the state government has reopened the borders and allowed entry of local tourists following Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), foreign tourists have still not been given permission to travel to the coastal state. Charters have also been denied within the state in view of the pandemic.

While officials from the tourism industry suggest that tourists may come in the next two or three months, it is very much predictable that the Christmas and New Year celebrations are going to be a low-key this year.

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