PESHAWAR           -           The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has neither taken a decision nor it is under its consideration to reopen the tourism industry in the prevailing coronavirus emergency situation in the province, said a senior official.

A communique quoting Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Secretary Tourism Khushal Khan as saying that the Tourism Department was closely monitoring various developments in the Covid-19 emergency situation. It said that the hospitality industry would remain closed to prevent the spread of outbreak of fast-travelling viral infection in the province.

It said that the provincial government had drafted new standard operating procedures (SOPs), however, the same would be approved and notified at an appropriate time after consultation with the relevant stakeholders. The reports about the reopening of tourism industry right now were termed irrelevant and baseless in the prevailing coronavirus pandemic.

Earlier, some reports suggested that an Integrated Tourism Contingency Plan had been prepared to put in place necessary arrangements for the possible restarting of tourism activities during the upcoming season in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.