FM Nirmala Sitharaman to address to media at 4, most likely to focus on hospitality sector

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is all set to announce the third tranche of the government’s mega economic relief package on Friday.

The focus today will be on the hospitality sector, according to sources. The hospitality sector has been severely hit in the wake of the nationwide lockdown since March 25.

The entire sector continues to urge the government for fiscal support as their operations are strictly prohibited due to the lockdown orders.

Cash flow has severely dried up with no revenue inflows and several hotel owners have requested the government to announce some form of monetary support to help them get back on their feet.

Besides a direct stimulus package to support employees — many of whom have lost their jobs —another demand that has been specified by the hospitality industry is related to a six-month suspension of GST payments.

While the announcements for reviving the hospitality sector remains to be seen, the government has already announced significant support for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), migrant labourers, farmers and middle class among others.

The government said that it will keep introducing more relief measures over the next few days, based on industry inputs, as part of the Rs 20 lakh crore package.

Sitharaman ensured that the government is committed to helping businesses tide over the coronavirus crisis and help India become “self-reliant” in the long run.

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