EBRD And EU Update Tourism Roadmap For Ukraine


By Anton Usov

Following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the tourism and hospitality industry across the world is expecting more than a billion tourists to cancel their holiday plans, leading to an 80 per cent drop compared with 2019.

In response, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Union (EU) have teamed up to offer emergency support and recommendations for Ukraine’s tourism industry, which has also been badly affected by the pandemic.

The analysis, supported by the EU4Business initiative, looked at implications for the sector, which employs up to 1 million people and contributes to around 9 per cent of GDP in Ukraine.

The report entitled Covid-19 pandemic and its effects on the Ukrainian tourism sector was presented online to industry professionals, regulators, relevant authorities and stakeholders. It updates the original tourism roadmap unveiled in Ukraine in November 2019 and is designed to unleash the country’s potential in the sector.

The report provides an overview of Covid-19 mitigation measures to be considered by the Ukrainian authorities, business and proposed by professional associations. It also recommends further steps needed in order to put tourism on the path to recovery. These include an anti-crisis plan for 2020, a reorganised roadmap, an awareness campaign and suggestions on capital investment requirements and new tourist products development.

More than 100 participants attended the online event, where they had a chance to find out what was happening to the tourism industry across the world, and how individual countries, tour operators and hospitality companies were combating the pandemic.

Ukraine is the first economy in which the EBRD invests where there has been such systemic sector analysis related to a specific industry. It is expected that the approach will be introduced in other countries too, drawing on experiences in Ukraine.

The EBRD is the largest international financial investor in Ukraine. To date, the Bank has made a cumulative commitment of almost €15 billion(US$16.96billion) through 466 projects in the country.

The company holds a 25 per cent stake in T-Mobile following its merger with Sprint.

SoftBank previously outlined plans to sell JPY4.5 trillion (US$42 billion) in assets to reduce debt and buy-back JPY2 trillion worth of shares, after reporting a record net loss of JPY961.6 billion in the year to end-March.

The company said until the T-Mobile funds are used for the planned share repurchase and debt reductions, it may invest them in “highly liquid securities and other instruments, together with other surplus funds”.

As part of its asset sale plan, in May it approved a sale of a 5 per cent stake of its domestic mobile operator valued at JPY310 billion.  .    

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