The Tunisian Hotel Trade Federation (FTH) on Wednesday warned against worsening of the country’s tourism crisis, in the wake of a strike by hotel industry workers, who are demanding a 6% wage increase citing rising cost of living.
The federation’s chairman Radhouane Ben Salah told a press conference that the industrial action which had been called by the workers’ trade union could have a “very negative impact” on the sector.
Salah said: “We came today to the point where we are unable to respond positively to any possible wage increments.”
“How can we talk of wage increments while the performance of the hotels, all hotels have been negative since 2011?”
Already hit by the instability following the 2011 Arab Spring revolution, the sectorhas been in a crisis after the jihadist attacks on the Bardo Museum and the Sousse beach massacre which left 60 dead, 59 of them were foreign tourists.
Tourism contributes to around 7% of Tunisia’s GDP, creating 400,000 direct and indirect job opportunities. Tourist numbers have however been falling, despite the contribution of local tourism, Algerian visitors and an influx of Russian clients.