Covid-19 has hit services sector hard

Revenues strangled as hotel occupancy drops

Our Correspondent July 15, 2020

Pakistan has witnessed a number of economic downturns since its inception, however, the Covid-19 pandemic has hammered the economy and badly affected the services sector, said Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Advisory Committee on FBR Convener Mian Zahid Hussain.

He said this during a special meeting on the issues being faced by the business community in the services sector.

Hussain emphasised the need for ensuring implementation and compliance with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) and protocols formulated by the government to run businesses in a professional manner.

Speaking on the occasion, FPCCI Vice President Khurram Ijaz said the entire business community, exporters and industrialists were facing numerous hardships.

He assured businessmen that they would be facilitated and necessary initiatives would be taken to raise their grievances with government authorities. Pakistan Hotels Association Chairman Zubair Baweja stated that the services sector, especially the hotel industry, had been badly affected by the Covid-19 outbreak.

He pointed out that if representatives of companies and other individuals could not travel and visit hotels, the revenues of the industry would take a hit. “As corporate expenses are strangled, off-site and sales meetings cannot be held. With flights stopped, there is no inbound travel and no flight crew staying at airport hotels.”

“All this has caused a severe dent on the revenue of the hotel industry,” he lamented, adding that hotels and marriage halls should be opened on an immediate basis.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 15th, 2020.

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