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Karema says they have already lost millions since the government announced Kenya's first case in early March/FILE


From empty beaches, safaris and hotel beds, coronavirus saps life out of Kenya’s tourism

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 28 -Tourism stakeholders are predicting losses worth tens of millions should Coronavirus continue spreading across the world.

The projection comes at a time when different countries continue to adopt measures that restrict global traveling to combat the spread of the disease.

Expeditions Maasai Safari Chief executive officer Pancras Karema says they have already lost millions since the government announced Kenya’s first case in early March.

“The pandemic has made us lose monies in the tune of millions since we had invested heavily in marketing and booking hotels in advance for clients hoping that we will be able to recover the money, ” said Karema.

He added that the curfew implemented yesterday has further seen cancellation and postponement of travel by potential clients who fear for their security should they fail to be home at the stipulated time.

“By requiring everyone to be at home by 7 pm, some of our clients have had to change their trips as they fear their security won’t be guaranteed if they are not at home,” he added.

The pandemic has seen some hotels close temporarily sending staffers home while others have nothing but empty hotel beds.

The government also aside that it was setting aside Sh500 million to be used as a post coronavirus recovery plan.

Transport Tourism and Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala said the monies will be used for events to market Kenya once the spread of the virus is contained globally.

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Tourism remains a key foreign exchange earner for the country; in 2019, earnings from the sector increased by 4 percent to hit Sh163 billion compared to Sh157.4 billion recorded in 2018.

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