The Ministry of Tourism says reopening the country to tourists did not lead to the emergence of a single COVID-19 wave in the country.
Speaking to media in Kandy, Minister of Tourism Prasanna Ranatunga said tourists are being brought down to the country while adhering to health advice.
Minister Ranatunga said persons engaged in the tourism industry who were facing hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic now have financial opportunities.
He added nearly three million people depend on the tourism industry.
The Minister said although the government has been providing concessions for such individuals it is temporary and insufficient.
He noted therefore bringing down tourists in a secure manner to resume the tourism industry is the only way to fix their economy which will in turn affect the country’s financial state.
Minister Ranatunga said tourists will continue to be brought down to the country while adhering to health guidelines.
Minister Prasanna Ranatunga said there is no need to close the country as the COVID vaccination drive is being carried out successfully at present.
He stated all factions including the health units, political authority and the public must face the pandemic adding that everyone must be united and fulfil their individual responsibilities to overcome the pandemic, instead of blaming one another.
Minister Ranatunga said the country was closed during the first and second waves as there were no vaccines provided.
He noted the world is facing the pandemic, adding Sri Lanka must move forward with the world.
The Minister added several factions in society will be affected if the country is closed.