50% of hotels shut down due to coronavirus pandemic (FTH Honorary President)

October 11, 2020

(TAP) (By Semia Boukhatem) - 'Nearly 50% of the hotels have shut down and the others will not be able to withstand this crisis over a long period of time,' Honorary President of the Tunisian Hotel Federation (FTH) Radhouane Ben Salah stated to TAP.

The tourist sector, and especially the hotel trade, has been hardly hit by the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ben Salah indicated, adding that even the hotels, whose doors are still open, are suffering great financial difficulties.

'They are trying to keep up their activities, even if they are loss-making. But this situation will not last for more than a few more months, as their treasuries are experiencing a severe liquidity crisis, especially since the banks are refusing to grant them credit,' he explained.

According to Ben Salah, the 500-million dinar credit line (MD), mobilised by the government at the onset of the health crisis, has not been activated so far, due to rejection by the banks.

'Even by activating this line, it should be noted that a large number of hotels, among those with doubtful debts (having loans contracted with banks that they cannot repay), will not be able to benefit from it, as they are not involved in this measure, even though they are the ones who are suffering greatly from the crisis.'

The FTH honorary president called on the government to activate this credit line and take these hotels into consideration, to ensure the sustainability of a major economic activity and thousands of jobs.

He also recommended deferring the due payment of various fees, in particular CNSS contributions and tax levies, as is the case for bank credits.


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