Argentine gov’t and tourism service providers agree to keep prices stable — MercoPress

Argentine gov’t and tourism service providers agree to keep prices stable

Wednesday, December 29th 2021 – 10:18 UTC

Fernández ruled out any additional sanitary restrictions for the summer season
Fernández ruled out any additional sanitary restrictions for the summer season

The Government of Argentina Tuesday announced an agreement had been reached to keep prices frozen for the 2022 of all items related to tourism for the 2022 summer season.

President Alberto Fernández signed the treaty on behalf of the Argentine Government at Casa Rosada with business people from domestic tourism chambers, thus keeping prices available in December of 2021 unchanged until March 15, 2022.

As it became known, the agreement will be in force until March 15, 2022 with the December values, and the supervision of compliance with the rate ranges will be in charge of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports.

After the ceremony, Fernández said government officials would check weekly whether service providers keep their word.

Tuesday’s agreement also speaks of “monthly meetings to evaluate the continuity and improvement of the commitment, and stipulates the dissemination of the agreed terms and conditions,” the Government said in a statement.

Also present at Casa Rosada were Tourism Minister Matías Lammens in addition to Gustavo Hani, chairman of the Argentine Chamber of Tourism (CAT) and of the Argentine Federation of Associations of Travel and Tourism Companies (FAEVYT); Roberto Amengual, chairman of the Association of Tourism Hotels of the Argentine Republic (AHT); and Fernando Desbots, head of the Gastronomic Hotel Business Federation of the Argentine Republic.

“The President gave us the instruction to take care of the pocket of the Argentine men and women,” said Lammens.

The initiative encompasses prices provided for in Law 25,997, also known as the Tourism Law, which include activities such as accommodation, entertainment, travel companies, tours, gastronomy and even “commercial air transport services,” although the details were yet to be finalized. The Tourism Ministry and the business chambers now need to define “reference values,” which heralds uneasy negoitiations, since “tourism is diverse.”

Since different values coexist throughout the summer -the same hotel room will be in all likelihood more expensive during the first week of January than during the first week of March-, those involved in the agreement said they would rather not talk about a “price freeze,” but about a “price support” rather.

Hotel owners and restauranteurs said the National Statistics Bureau (Indec) had shown a 5% increase on average in November’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) when compared to that of October. Hence, between November 2020 and the same month in 2021 hotels and restaurants went up 63.4%. It was the activity with the highest year-on-year increase.

In this scenario, Lammens highlighted the “commitment of the entire sector to sign this agreement, which has to do with the great demand,” despite the growth in coronavirus cases. “We are on the verge of a season that is going to be historic, one that is going to be among the best of the decade,” Lammens insisted.

The Government had already launched a promotion program which offered up to 50% in credit to people who made advance purchases of travel services.

President Fernández also ruled out any additional restrictions to the ones currently in force for the summer season. “We are all concerned [about the increase in cases], we would like not to have them, but as we get vaccinated, everything will be easier,” Fernández told journalists at Casa Rosada.

The presidential announcement guaranteed the federal government would not follow the example of the province of Córdoba, which has set new admission caps for indoor large events.

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