FIAVET (Federazione Italiana Associazioni Imprese Viaggi E Turismo), the Italian Federation of Travel and Tourism Associations, sent out an alarming message to the Italian government: “Travel agencies are disappearing; they do not exist for this government,” adding, “Enough [of] this sector massacre! This forgetfulness is not tolerable. Yes to [Italian] sex shops, tattoo artists, dog sitters, but to us who bring 13% of GDP to this country -no help.”
The state has apparently forgotten about more than 10,000 companies and around 80,000 employees of which 72.5% are women.
“We have been patient so far, but now is the time to say enough,” said the President of FIAVET, Ivana Jelinic. “We have sympathized for all sectors in difficulty, because tourism, which has lost 23 billion euros this year according to the latest Demoskopika survey, … has many parallel sectors at heart, but now we are at the top.”
FIAVET, after months of dialogue, hearings in Parliament, participatory meetings, and assemblies shared with institutions, saw the economic ATECO codes of travel agencies disappear from the Ristori Decree, and had the founded hope, almost certainty, of seeing them included in the Ristori Bis where the first 53 ATECO codes were joined by another 57 admitted to non-repayable grants between 100 and 200%. But nothing materialized.
FIAVET reiterated that many of the businesses that enjoy these benefits at least have operated during the summer and can still remain open before the curfew in the yellow areas while travel agencies have no clients due to their travel budget being cut since February 2020. And to top it off, they will soon be asked to pay taxes, contributions, the IMU installment, and many other charges amounting to thousands of euros.
“Finally,” said Jelinic, “I want to add that the disproportionate investment in the Holiday Bonus of 2.4 billion euros, which was clearly a failure, saw the FIAVET excluded, making any further trust in the institutions on the part of our base untenable, and sees me as President of FIAVET, truly embittered by this waste, by this detachment from our reality of Italian, industrious, civil companies, which are being massacred.”