Published on : Friday, February 28, 2020
The Covid-19 virus first emerged in December and had killed more than 2,760 people mostly in China infecting more than 81,000 in more than 45 countries.
Gloria Guevara said that it was too soon to know but the WTTC made a preliminary calculation with Oxford Economics which estimated that the crisis will cost the sector at least $22 billion.
Based on the experience of previous crises like Sars or H1N1 the calculation is based and it also took into consideration the losses from Chinese tourists who have not been travelling in recent weeks.
Chinese tourists spend the most while travelling and taking the hypothese that a 7% drop in overseas trips by Chinese nationals the loss figure is the most optimistic scenarios envisaged by the study conducted by Oxford Economics.
But if the crisis lasts as long Sars outbreak the losses could more than double and reach as much as $49 billion. Sars erupted in November 2002 and was brought under control in July 2003.
It might spiral to $73 billion if it lasted longer than that. Hong Kong and Macau, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines’s economies is likely to suffer the most.
The World Trade Organisation urged countries to avoid taking health measures that would cause ‘unnecessary interference with international traffic and trade’. It stated that the travel restrictions should be proportionate to ensure so that they do not have negative repercussion on the tourism sector.