New Delhi | Jagran Business Desk: The Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) has asked Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to consider a moratorium for loans taken by players in the sector and a special resolution framework for restructuration of loans as part of immediate measures to support the pandemic-battered industry. The demands of the sector come ahead of Union Budget 2022-23, which will be presented in the Parliament on February 1.

Earlier in December 2021, the FHRAI had sent its pre-budget recommendations to FM Sitharaman and suggested the inclusion of hotels and tourism-related sectors in the National Infrastructure Pipeline.

Now, in the representation submitted to the FM, FHRAI is seeking a moratorium extension of minimum of one year for loans availed under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS). In addition, it has also demanded that Rs 60,000 crore loan guarantee scheme for the COVID-affected sector be notified with immediate effect.

"We are currently in the midst of the third wave of coronavirus and the hospitality industry will not be able to bear the brunt of another wave," said Gurbaksh Singh Kohli, Vice President, FHRAI while commenting on the demands of the federation.

"Given the potential for damage and to be able to avoid the impact of the third wave, we request the Finance Minister to immediately announce special measures for our sector," he added.

Kohli also mentioned that as the sector was inoperative due to restrictions, it is not in a position to repay loans already taken.

"Our foremost request is for a moratorium of minimum one year for repayment of loans along with interest for the hospitality industry. In addition to this, we request that in view of the unparalleled situation of the tourism and hospitality sector, another round of resolution framework be announced for the sector for restructuring of its loans," he said.

(With inputs from PTI)

Posted By: Sugandha Jha