Sri Lanka is set to lose at least US $1.5 billion in tourism revenue following the devastating Easter Sunday attacks, warned The Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (THASL).
“This is the first ever time the terrorists have targeted and attacked tourists, particularly hotels. From the immediate reactions, we are estimating that there will be a massive loss of $1.5 billion in tourism earnings this year," the president of the association Santh Ukwatte told the Daily FT.
As a result of the attacks, Ulwatte called on the government to support employees that would potentially lose jobs.
“Considering this devastating situation to the industry, we request the government to step in and help the hoteliers with monetary concessions to maintain the livelihood of thousands of our employees,” he added.
The Daily FT reports that Sri Lanka received $4.4 billion of revenue from tourism, making the industry the island's 3rd largest foreign exchange earner.