Tourism to restart in July

The Government hopes to receive international tourists as early as July, subject to the green light from the Health Ministry.

Minister of Industrial Exports, Investment Promotion, Tourism, and Civil Aviation Prasanna Ranatunga told The Morning that if the Covid-19 situation continues to improve, it is likely that tourist arrivals could begin as early as July.

“Things seem to be improving significantly and are normalising, so if this is maintained we can hopefully start by July. But first, we must get the go ahead from the Health Ministry. That is crucial,” the Minister said.

He went on to say that they would first look to attract long-stay tourists such as those who come for ayurvedic treatments.

“Tourists who come for ayurvedic retreats and treatments usually tend to stay for several months. This is ideal as they would need to first go through a mandatory quarantine period in Sri Lanka upon arrival,” he said, noting that long-stay tourists would benefit the best as they would have ample time after their quarantine period to enjoy the luxuries offered by the country.

Furthermore, a compulsory PCR test before and after arrival would be a prerequisite for any international tourist, it is learnt.

By Skandha Gunasekara