The European Union (EU) has decided to provide a grant of 4.9 million to boost Sri Lanka's tourism industry, which has collapsed due to the Covid 19. Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the European Union Dennis Chaibi has assured Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga that the 49 euro grant will be made available to Sri Lanka soon.
He was speaking at a meeting between Sri Lankan Ambassador to the European Union Dennis Chaibi and Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga at the Ministry of Tourism yesterday (07). The meeting was held to discuss steps to be taken to uplift the tourism industry in the country.
The EU Ambassador stated that the grant is expected to be extended to seven key areas for the development of the tourism sector. The award will be given for the development of a travel guide, fitness tours, assistance to small and medium scale entrepreneurs in the tourism sector, health and training of those engaged in the industry, social security programs and the upliftment of the community based tourism industry. Accordingly, assistance will be provided to 54 hotels run by small and medium scale entrepreneurs in the tourism sector. It has also decided to provide 200,000 euros for a social security project implemented with the International Labor Organization. Arrangements have also been made to allocate one million Euros for the community based tourism business centered in the Central and Uva Provinces.
The EU Ambassador said that Sri Lanka was the best country ruled by Covid 19. He said that this was a significant victory for the current government led by President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and commended the President, the Prime Minister and the government in this regard. He also welcomed the emergence of a strong and stable government in Sri Lanka and said that the European Union was keen to support the development of Sri Lanka's tourism and investment sectors.
Minister Prasanna Ranatunga thanked the European Union for its continued contribution to the development of Sri Lanka's tourism sector and said that the government, led by the President and the Prime Minister, considers the protection of the people of Sri Lanka from the Kovid epidemic as a top priority. Minister DV Chanaka, EU Deputy Director-General for Trade and Communications Thurstan Bagfred, Secretary to the Ministry of Tourism S. Hettiarachchi and Secretary to the Ministry of State Madhava Devasurendra were also present.


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