(Ecofin Agency) - Travel companies in Kenya are asking for government support to better resist the coronavirus pandemic. In a statement issued last April 14, Mohammed Wanyoike (pictured), head of the Kenya Association of Travel Agents (KATA) called the state to grant the association a financial support.
"We call on policymakers to continue discussions and agree on coordinated measures that are necessary for the successful start of travel even as they strive to improve the country's epidemiological situation […] We urge the government to particularly pay attention to the vulnerable travel industry in the recovery phase, to not only save small businesses but to save jobs as well," said Mohamed Wanyoike.
The travel industry, very close to that of tourism and hotel, has suffered a heavy loss due to the pandemic, not only in Kenya but also in the rest of the world. In this East African country where many SMEs are active in the travel sector, the restriction measures deployed to control the spread of the virus has led to massive financial losses for entrepreneurs in 2020. In recent weeks, these measures have been tightened in Nairobi and four Kenyan counties, resulting in the suspension of all domestic flights by Kenya Airways.
KATA's response to the situation includes a moratorium on lending to businesses that are already struggling to return to pre-covid-19 profit levels. We need a framework of coordination of travel restrictions that will not kill the travel businesses in Kenya, which includes a common criterion that seeks to facilitate continued travel rather than impede it,” the KATA president said.
In June last year, the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) also asked for the same support from the government for the industry sector. And three months later the state announced a $92 million credit guarantee facility for businesses.
Moutiou Adjibi Nourou