The Hotel Association of India (HAI) has urged the government to grant
infrastructure status to hotels, extend the moratorium on loans and rationalize

In its pre-Budget memorandum, HAI said that policy arbitration is
crucial for the industry’s survival and its recovery.

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HAI in a statement said, “The hospitality industry was slowly
getting into a recovery mode on the strength of domestic tourism, leisure, and
events, only to be plunged back into uncertainty on account of the Omicron
threat. It is critical to protect the industry during such prolonged periods of
flip-flop in business prospects”.

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One of the major demands from the sector is to accord infrastructure
status to hotels because it will resolve a large number of issues being faced
by the hospitality sector. It will help encourage investments in the sector.

The association said that access to softer funding, longer periods for
loan repayments, and reducing the gestation period will make hotel investments
more attractive. Investment in the hospitality sector will encourage job
creation and development.

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HAI stressed the fact that infrastructure status will help the hotels to
benefit from low taxes, utility tariffs and easy approval processes for

The statement said that steps like an extended moratorium,
rationalization of taxes, and facilitating ease of doing business will ease the
recovery of the hospitality sector.

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The hospitality industry contributes 9% to India’s GDP and employs
roughly 4.5 crore people and supports the livelihood of around 16 crore people,
HAI said in its statement. The pandemic has affected the lives of millions of
people working in the hospitality industry, it added.

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“Due to the pandemic,
the potential shock to the livelihood of millions working in the hospitality
industry is enormous. The Indian hospitality sector has a critical role to play
in the post-pandemic economic revival and has been announced as the fourth pillar
of the Indian economy,” the statement said.