The government of Nepal has planned to resume both domestic and international flight services from 17 August 2020 with proper safety measures to fight against coronavirus.
To curb the spread of COVID-19 infection Nepal government has suspended all passenger flights enforcing the nationwide lockdown on March 22. The only flights allowed to operate were the chartered flights for humanitarian purposes or the delivery of medicinal equipment. But now, as our country, Nepal has witnessed a drop in new cases of COVID-19, the government of Nepal has planned to lift the ongoing suspension on Flights.
The Tourism Ministry is working on a tentative plan to restart the domestic flights and international flights from August 17, an official close to Minister Yogesh Bhattarai said. The first round of flights will be to and from capital Kathmandu, he said.
The Ministery of Tourism will recommend the COVID-19 Crisis Management Center ( headed by the Deputy Prime Minister Ishwor Pokharel ) to resume flight operations next month, the official said.
The resumption of the aviation service is expected to give the proper boost to the tourism industry which has strived a lot due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thousand of Nepali people in the tourism sector have lost jobs and many companies have shut down their businesses. During the lockdown period, many people remained unemployed facing various problems. Even hotel and travel company owners faced huge losses due to this pandemic. But now the Nepal government has planned to resume domestic and International flights from August. Hence with the opening of the flight service there arises the hope to overcome this huge loss.
As per the 2018 report by the World Travel and Tourism Council, the Nepalese tourism sector, directly and indirectly, employs around 10.5 lakh people, generating the revenue of over 24,000 crore Nepali rupees. The travel and tourism sector contributed about 7.9% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product. However, this pandemic caused a huge loss in the economy of the country from each and every sector, even from the tourism sector.
In the last week, there have been more cases of recovery than the number of new COVID-19 infection cases. Nepal has reported 17844 COVID-19 cases, however now the number of active cases in Nepal has dropped to around 6000 this week. The country has reported 11868 recovered cases until today.