Kashmir hoteliers seek govt intervention

Only 10% occupancy in hotels: Hoteliers

MUKEET AKMALI
Srinagar, Publish Date: Nov 13 2018 9:21PM | Updated Date: Nov 13 2018 9:31PM
Kashmir hoteliers seek govt interventionFile Photo

Kashmir tourism sector is in dire-straits as the occupancy rate in hotels across Valley is recorded at meagre 10 percent resulting in losses to hospitality sector.

According to an assessment of Kashmir coordination committee of hoteliers, hotels in Kashmir are witnessing only 10 percent occupancy implying that hotel industry is bleeding losses.

They state it takes around 40 to 50 percent occupancy of rooms for any hotelier to break even expenditure component, profits are calculated above the 50 percent mark.

“Given this situation, there are losses being recorded across the tourism sector, which is not a good sign, even though economic survey report mention that tourism contributes to around 10 percent but its contribution in terms of job creation is much higher than any other sector,” said chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Hoteliers Club, Mushtaq Ahmad Chaya.

He said from last two years, tourism sector is bleeding losses. There has not been any respite despite hectic tourism promotion campaigns by the tourism players. “However we urge the government to come forward and launch comprehensive tourism promotion campaign which could help in safeguarding interests of the tourism sector.”

President, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries, Sheikh Ashiq said that low occupancy of hotels is a serious cause of concern. “10 percent occupancy means losses for the hospitality sector. We need to get our act together and work hard to get tourism sector out of mess.”

President, Jammu and Kashmir Hotels and Restaurants Association, ShowkatChowdhary said this time of the year occupancy of hotel rooms used to be around 60 percent. “But currently hotels are witnessing meagre 10 percent occupancy which is pushing hospitality sector toward bankruptcy.”

“Our hoteliers are forced to sell assets to clear their liabilities, we have never seen such worst situation when it comes to tourism sector,” he said adding that negative propaganda campaign launched by some outside media channels has wreaked havoc with tourism sector.

President, Kashmir Hotels and Restaurant Owners Federation, Abdul Wahid Malik expressed concern over deteriorating condition of the hospitality sector. “Exorbitant airfares and closure of Srinagar-Jammu highway is adding fuel to the fire when it comes to low occupancy rate. We are not even recovering our expenses such is the grim situation of the tourism sector.  Government should rope in professionals and tourism experts to safeguard this sector and promote it efficiently.” While hoteliers have been badly hit, the low tourist influx is also badly hurting the travel companies.

President, Travel Agents Association of Kashmir, Ashfaq Dug said that business has reached its lowest ebb. “Arrival of visitors has drastically reduced which is giving nightmares to the tourism players. Despite hectic tourism promotion campaigns by the local tourism players, there has not been any improvement in the tourism scenario since 2016.”

 

 

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