If the trends of international books are anything to go by, Seychelles is in a spot now. An official from the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) stated that the situation in the tourism industry, however, might witness a rise during the last quarter of this year. The tourism sector faced the dead end when the nation closed all its borders to contain the spread of COVID-19. Also, flight connectivity was halted, which impacted the sector further.
Now, due to the spread of the Coronavirus, the archipelago declared that it will not allow cruise-ship passengers on its shores until 2022. Mentioning to this, Didier Dogley, the country’s Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, said that the prohibition is in effect immediately, and will remain in place till the end of next year. Apparently, the government will also announce stimulus measures to boost the travel industry of the country, until it gains the impetus.
As per the news reports, the Seychelles Ports Authority accepted the government’s decision, which has been looked upon as a move to lessen the risks of COVID-19 from spreading further. An official in the know-how stated that the cruise industry has been a spark for spreading this disease across the world, and that the cruise industry is walking toward a catastrophic drop in revenue because of Coronavirus spread.
The official also added that the verdict to ban cruise ships will obviously the profits streams of the Seychelles Ports Authority (SPA); nevertheless, it is important to realize that the risk of COVID-19 resurgence in Seychelles far outweighs the opportunity cost of not having cruise port calls for the next two years. He added that port Victoria also continues the only gateway to the economy, and that the Seychelles Government cannot allow to compromise this strategic point of transit, which connects the country’s maritime industry to the rest of the world.
Apart from prohibiting the cruise ships on its shores, Seychelles international airport will also not open till June 1.