(Bloomberg) --

The hit to Turkey’s tourism industry, a critical source of revenue, from the coronavirus pandemic was starkly displayed in April data that showed the collapse in foreign arrivals as the health emergency escalated.

About 24,000 foreign tourists arrived in Turkey in April, compared to 3.3 million in the same month last year, data published by Culture and Tourism Ministry on Friday showed.

Claiming to have the nation’s outbreak contained, Turkey wants to ease a partial lockdown beginning in June. Authorities are planning a comprehensive certification system for airlines, airports, hotels and restaurants, Tourism Minister Mehmet Ersoy told NTV on May 16. The system will focus on social distancing and hygiene rules, he said.

The government has also introduced tax cuts and payment deferrals for businesses, including in the tourism sector, to aid a recovery. Foreign vacationers generated $28.7 billion in 2019, the bulk of Turkey’s total tourism income.

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