South Asia and Beyond

COVID-19: ‘Airlines Need To First Survive Before Looking To Revive’

NEW DELHI: India’s tourism and aviation sector was the first to be hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and will probably be the last to recover. In industry parlance it’s called a much larger head and tail. The crisis is seen as having a worse impact than 9/11 or the 2008-09 financial meltdown. According to KPMG, the World Travel and Tourism Council has estimated that the coronavirus will cost the tourism sector at least $ 22 billion and the travel sector will shrink by up to 25 per cent in 2020, resulting in the loss of a staggering 50 million jobs.

Sanjay Datta, the Asia President of travel related umbrella body SKAL International, breaks down the assessment of the International Air Transport Association, that the global revenue loss for the passenger business this year, could be between $63 billion and $ 114 Billion. In conversation with StratNews Global Associate Editor Amitabh P. Revi, he also looks at the impact on the Indian tourism and hospitality industry, which is staring at potential job losses of around 38 million people, around 70 per cent of the total workforce. Mr Datta says he sees travel going down by 50-60% over the next 18 months.

Amitabh P. Revi

Russian language speaker and conflict journalist. Amitabh Revi has been there, done that—from the battlefields of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan to sublime Russia, Australia and the United States. Along the way he's picked up the Dag Hammarskjöld Distinguished Journalist Fellowship, the Ramnath Goenka award for coverage of the Iraq War and RT's Khaled Alkhateb Award for his reporting from Palmyra, Syria.

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