Nepal is safe for tourists as it is free from coronavirus: Minister Bhattarai

Published On: February 19, 2020 06:15 PM NPT By: Kamal Subedi  | @Inspiredkamal

KATHMANDU, Feb 19: Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Yogesh Bhattarai has said that the world should be informed about the fact that Nepal is free from the dark shadow of coronavirus.

The minister's response comes a day after all the 175 Nepali nationals evacuated from China's Hubei province who have been kept in quarantine at Kharipati of Bhaktapur since Sunday morning tested negative for the coronavirus.

Minister Bhattarai stressed the need to disseminate the message to the world community that Nepal is a corona-free zone and safe for visiting. 

Adding further, he informed that high alert with tight screening has been maintained at all the entry points to Nepal including the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA). He also clarified that there is no immediate plan to invite the Chinese tourists after the declaration of 'Nepal as coronavirus free zone.' "However, we must be ready to take advantage by welcoming a large number of Chinese visitors to Nepal once China completely gets rid of this viral outbreak," he added. 

On the occasion, he maintained that an alternative market should be sought to protect the private sector from being paralyzed as it may be affected when the tourism market fails. "Amid the present scenario when there is no arrival of Chinese tourists, we must look for various ideas to receive the tourists from other countries," said he adding that the government will soon establish twelve desks to attract the visitors from Europe, America and the Middle East. 

Minister Bhattarai took time to express solidarity with the northern neighbor on behalf of Nepalese people and the government at this hour of their tragedy in China.


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