Reopening economy gives us fighting chance – Top hotelier

by | Mar 18, 2021 | Business | 0 comments

Hosia Mviringi

Players in the hotel and catering industry have saluted government for its decision to allow restaurants to accommodate sit in clients.

The decision announced at this week`s post-cabinet briefing was interpreted by restaurateurs as a timely intervention.
Reacting to the announcement, Victoria Falls Safari Lodge General Manager Mr Anald Musonza said the decision was pragmatic and showed an understanding of industry dynamics.

“The reopening of restaurants at fifty percent capacity gives confidence to the tourism and hospitality industry that we are moving in the right direction.

A lot of people in the sector lost their jobs and we hope that some find their way back to their workspaces.We are grateful to government for the timely decision to allow us to reopen and save jobs,” said Mr Musonza.

He expressed confidence that if all stakeholder come to the table to work together, a quick turnaround is achievable.
Mr Musonza lauded government for the latest relaxation of lockdown measures saying it is a confidence booster to the travelling public and local patrons alike.

“The current lockdown relaxations have helped give hope for resumption of traffic of business into our industry. Coupled with the vaccination program we anticipate a rebound, though it may not be at pre-2019 levels, as the whole world is still cautious”, he said.

These sentiments were expressed by other stakeholders in the Tourism and Hospitality industry, who cannot wait to see the sleeping giant rising again.

Mr Musonza however envisaged closer cooperation between government agencies and local authorities to facilitate a smooth return to business for the sector.

“We are hopeful that there will be considerations for a moratorium on licence fees needed to reopen businesses as we have not generated any meaningful revenue for the whole year. It’s these costs of doing business that could hinder a quick turnaround in the sector,” he said.

Despite the good application of discretion by Government local authorities are throwing spanners in the recovery works as they have hiked their 2021 rates and tourism players have cried foul.

“The fees are largely unaffordable for an industry that has not been trading for more than twelve months.
Therefore we kindly appeal for a reprieve to make for a case for survival and getting our wheels for the business to turn once again,” Mr Musonza said.