With tourism arrivals and receipts for 2020 poised to take a significant hit as a result of the COVID-2019, Singapore's tourism sector is facing its biggest challenge since SARS in 2003, according to the Singapore Tourism Board (STB).
"But unlike SARS, we are now better prepared and more resilient," said Chief Executive of STB Keith Tan.
In a press statement, Tan said the local tourism economy is aiming for a strong recovery on the back of four years of consecutive growth. In addition, there has been a compelling pipeline of tourism investments, and efforts to build new capabilities. "Our destination remains attractive, we have a strong pipeline of tourism products, and our market portfolio is diverse,” he said.
The Singapore government had also formed a public-private sector Tourism Recovery Action Task Force (TRAC) to lay out the plans for recovery and future growth.
Comprising tourism leaders from both the private and public sectors, TRAC will map out recovery strategies and plans for tourism in Singapore. Their work will include identifying opportunities arising from the COVID-2019 crisis, driving and implementing measures to instill confidence in Singapore’s tourism establishments, as well as co-creating and initiating recovery plans.
The COVID-2019 has had a substantial impact on visitor arrivals, especially from China, which accounts for around 20 per cent of international visitor arrivals. Visitor arrivals from STB’s other key source markets are also expected to fall due to lower travel confidence globally.
Based on the current situation, STB expects visitor arrivals this year to fall by about 25 to 30 per cent.