The Romanian spa industry has lost 40 million euros in the last month and a half, and if the situation continues, 60% of the relevant companies will not survive until the end of the year, the Employers' Organization of Spa Tourism in Romania (OPTBR) points out in a release sent to AGERPRES on Tuesday.
"Since the latest call to the authorities on September 9, the spa industry has been waiting for a series of measures from them. Either the unrestricted opening of this sector of activity or a series of measures aimed at avoiding the collapse of the industry, which as OPTBR warned last month, is on the verge of bankruptcy, stating at that time that 60% of relevant companies would not survive in the current conditions, by the end of 2020. (...) Approximately 40 million euros were lost in just a month and a half, so that each day of delay brings immense damage to the Romanian spa industry, for which the long-awaited measures may arrive too late. Although the number of infections has increased significantly among ESPA (European Spa Association) members, even though there have been restrictions on the activity of restaurants and terraces, the treatment bases have not been restricted and work normally, only influenced by the reaction of potential customers. At the same time, the governments of the European states have thought of post-Covid recovery programs for the healed, offering health vouchers in the European spa centers," the OPTBR representatives claim.
According to the quoted source, on Monday, October 19, the Organization sent an address to Prime Minister Ludovic Orban, as well as to the Ministers of Public Finance, Labor and Social Protection, Health and Economy, Energy and Business Milieu.
Among the requests submitted are fiscal measures such as the reduction of taxes and charges during the state of alert depending on the degree of occupancy of hotels and the reduction or elimination of the activity tax and mining royalty due to the National Agency for Mineral Resources (ANRM), such as the extension of furlough, the extension of the measure to support the payment of salaries or the possibility of employing retired people in industry, without paying the social contributions for them, except for a maximum tax of 10%.
It has also been proposed to extend grants, without long-term conditions, related to maintaining a high level of turnover and a large number of employees, in the context of the uncertainty on the market, the granting of holiday vouchers in 2021, but also the support of doctors and therapists specialized in the industry.
The employers in the spa tourism consider that, in the relevant industry, "losses continue to accumulate in the absence of the opening of all the facilities that could let the industry support itself."