Govt. to support tourist places shut over coronavirus

April 6, 2020 - 23:53

TEHRAN – The Iranian government has drafted a plan to support tourist places, which have been shut down over the novel coronavirus pandemic in the country.

On a Sunday meeting headed by President Hassan Rohani, the cabinet tasked the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts with compensating for private investors who have leased tourism-related sites shut down over the fears of coronavirus outbreak, CHTN reported.

Delaying to collect or pardon the leases or extending the lease period are among ways approved to compensate.

Up to the moment, the tourism ministry has temporarily ceded tens of historical places and monuments to the private sector intending to receive better maintenance by repurposing them into thriving eco-lodges, traditional restaurants or other profitable niches.

Iran hosts some of the world’s oldest cultural monuments including bazaars, museums, mosques, bridges, bathhouses, madrasas, gardens, rich natural, rural landscapes as well as 24 UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Earlier this week, the government allocated 10 trillion rials (about $240 million (at the official rate of 42,000 rials) to help airliners refund the cost of flights, which have been canceled by the novel coronavirus. Based on official statistics, over 70 percent of air tickets have so far been canceled in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, which has raged Iran and many parts of the globe.

AFM/MG

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