Speaking at a foreign media interview, Kishu Gomes, the Chairman of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, stated that the Easter Day attacks are a blow in the economy at large, not just tourism industry.
However, the Chairman says that when considering other tourist destinations which also received similar attacks in similar incidents such as Bali or Paris, he is fairly confident that Sri Lanka might be able to bounce back in a few days time.
“Army is in well control. They have been able to apprehend most of the culprits and they say that they will be able to apprehend the masterminds behind the organizations. They have so far been very very effective”, said Gomes.
Therefore, he is sure that over the next couple of months Sri Lanka will be able to reach that safe environment within which the rebuilding process could begin, he said.
Speaking of the people in the industry who have been affected by the attacks, he says nearly 700,000 persons are involved in the tourism sector and make a livelihood from the tourism sector. Out of which nearly 400,000 persons are directly involved with the sector, he pointed out. It is quite significant given that tourism is the 3rd largest revenue generator of the country, he said.
According to the Chairman, the maximum impact on the tourism industry will be about 20%, both in terms of the number of tourists and the economic impact.
“Many have come up to me to show their support and condolences. This is global terrorism. In a situation of that nature we all have to get together and support each other that the world is a safer place for all tourists to enjoy all destinations”, concluded Gomes.