The Jakarta Post
Following the closures, PHRI estimated more than 150,000 employees had been severely impacted. (Shutterstock/FabrikaSimf)
The number of hotels that have closed in Indonesia as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak has reached more than 1,260, according to the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI).
“Based on the latest report, 1,266 hotels have been shut down as of [Monday] afternoon,” PHRI chairman Hariyadi Sukamdani told Antara news agency in Jakarta on Tuesday, adding that the real number would definitely be higher given the many unreported hotel closures.
Following the closures, PHRI estimated more than 150,000 employees had been severely impacted.
Just a few days ago, Hariyadi shared with tempo.co that the recorded number of closed hotels was 698.
In addition to hotels, many restaurants have also closed down as a result of the temporary closure of several shopping malls and limited capacity to provide delivery and takeaway services.
Amid the crisis, Hariyadi said the association continued to coordinate with the government in solving the matter as zero income would mean the hotels would not be able to pay their employees' salaries, or the upcoming Idul Fitri holiday bonus (THR).
According to Hariyadi, most of the employees of the 1,266 closed hotels had been asked to take unpaid leave. “The companies couldn't pay them at all."
Indonesian tourism has been hit hard by the pandemic. Economist and director of the Center of Reform on Economics (CORE) Mohammad Faisal said that Indonesian tourism would take at least a year to recover from the damage, as the industry largely depended on people’s psychology, and was very sensitive to safety and security aspects. In the recovery period, regaining people's faith in traveling again after the pandemic would be a challenging task, he said.
“During the recovery period, unlike other business sectors, tourism will take a longer time to return to normalcy because tourists need to be assured that the situation is really safe and secure before they travel again. So, it will take time,” Faisal said on April 2. (gis/kes)
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