Difficult Times: Rwanda hotels lose billions as coronavirus effects bite

By Nicole Kamanzi M.
On 22 March 2020 at 02:10

Hotels in Rwanda have reported losses amounting to over Rwf13 billion since February this year, as f-in-bound and outbound flights reduced in arrivals and departures up to complete naught lockdown that was effected from yesterday, conferences canceled and meetings postponed due to coronavirus outbreak.

There is an average of 7,000 hospitality establishments (including hotels, restaurants and bars and accommodations facilities) across the country which employ over 84,000 workers.

Tourism and the hospitality sector currently account for about 142,000 jobs.

Barakabuye Nsengiyumva, the Chairperson of Rwanda Hoteliers’ Association (RHA) said that some hospitality establishments were already laying off workers as a way of mitigating losses and accumulation of unpaid salaries for employees who are redundant.

“We are still awaiting reports from other hotels so the figure is bound to rise,” he said.

Nsengiyumva added that they were in discussions with the government to devise measures of supporting hoteliers to remain afloat in these difficult times.

Nsengimana said that with the cancellation of flights and conferences, the sector is at risk of losing many jobs due to the crisis.