‘Great concern’ for tourism this summer as 90% of firms without sales

  • Lusa
  • 16 April 2020

The president of the Portuguese Tourism Confederation, Francisco Calheiros, has shown concern about what could happen this summer in terms of economic consequences for the tourism.

The president of the Portuguese Tourism Confederation (CTP) has expressed “great concern” about what could happen this summer in terms of economic consequences for the sector, stressing that 90% of companies in the sector currently have “zero sales”.

Francisco Calheiros was speaking after a meeting between employers’ confederations and Portugal’s prime minister, António Costa, about the conditions for the revival of the Portuguese economy, once the most critical phase in the fight against the Covid-19 Pandemic has passed.

“In March, we practically had a fifty-percent drop in all activity,” Calheiros said at a news conference. “In April and May, more than 90% of our companies will have zero sales.”

The CTP president stressed that he did not have “a crystal ball” to be able to know when the crisis caused by the Pandemic will be overcome, noting that one of the year’s most important periods of the sector had already passed and been a major problem.

“We have already had the problem of Easter, but we are very worried about what could happen in the summer,” he said.

According to Calheiros, if current figures regarding the rate of new coronavirus infections are confirmed at the end of the month, then “calmly and safely – with the availability of protective equipment – we should reopen activity” in the sector.

“In tourism we must be creative,” he said. “For example, it may be that only part of installed capacity is taken up and, on the other hand, that room service is used at breakfast and not a common room.”