Belgium’s new measures to curb the epidemic of the coronavirus are “a disaster” for the hospitality sector the president of the Fédération Horeca Bruxelles Philippe Trine told the Belga press agency.
The limitation of the number of people inside and outside (100 and 200), “with the important constraint of wearing a mask,” the recommendation of generalised teleworking and, the social bubble which is going from 15 people to 5, “these are very damaging measures which are going to cost a lot of money,” said Trine.
Just while the order books of the hospitality sectors were filling up, the president of the organisation feared new cancellations because of the announced attendance limitation for events, especially weddings, which will only allow 10 guests.
“As the sector was slowly getting back on its feet, we were afraid that the National Security Council would cut off one of our arms, but it’s a leg that was cut off,” Trine said. “Because of the coronavirus epidemic, 50% of the sector’s staff has not resumed work,” he said.
“Fortunately, some have managed to more or less compensate with a take-away service, but for now, it is survival. Clearly, we are going to see bankruptcies,” Trine said. “People are at the end of their rope and are always looking for ways out,” he added.
The recommendation to telework, and the fact that there are not enough tourists in Brussels further undermine the downtown hotels and restaurants, but also the restaurants.
The Federation Horeca Vlaanderen made the same observation and foresees a bleak future for caterers and event venues.
The Brussels Times