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26/11, recession hit business in shacks in Goa

Source: PTI
Last updated on: May 28, 2009 16:41 IST
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Shack business on the beaches of Goa witnessed a slump this season owing to economic downturn and the Mumbai terror attack which hit the tourist inflow.

"In comparison to last season, we can say that the business was down by almost 15 per cent," President of Goa Shacks Owners Welfare Society, Cruz Cardoz, told PTI.

"The season that went by had global recession and Mumbai attack, slashing the tourist inflow," he said.

As a result, the palm-thatched shelters on the beaches of Goa are being dismantled and the operators are in the process of winding up operations.

"The only relief this season was that the state tourism department had issued licences for shacks much before the time," Cardoz said, adding about 300-odd shacks were licensed to operate between September 31, 2008 and May 31, 2009.

The department also concedes that the industry was hit by recession.

"The shack owners managed to make good business till November-December, last year, before the recession began," state tourism director, Swapnil Naik, said.

The slash is not only in the shack business, there is overall downfall in the market, Lyndon Monteiro, officer on special duty to tourism minister, stated.

The shack owners also faced the brunt of unseasonal rains, which has hit the coastal state much in advance.

The pre-monsoon showers have already began in few parts of the state. So, its better to close down the business before it gets affected due to rains, Simon DSilva, a shack owner from Candolim beach in North Goa, said.

The statistics available with the Tour and Travel Association of Goa showed that around 614 flights arrived in the state till April this tourist season while 710 charted flights had flown in to Goa in the corresponding period last year.

The last chartered flight moved out of Goa on May 10 culminating international tourist season although few guests are still enjoying the sunny beaches, which are already closed for swimming through a government order on Wednesday.

The tourists are warned not to go into sea from May 27, 2009 onwards.

"All public in general and tourists are advised not to venture into the sea till September 15, 2009," a government order reads.

The monsoons are likely to hit the state this week and the sea would be rough during the season.

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