Telangana likely to cook up means to boost city restaurants | Hyderabad News – Times of India

HYDERABAD: After being left out in the cold when Covid-19 struck in March 2020, Hyderabad’s restaurant industry is finally looking forward to more hospitable times.
Not only is business bouncing back, the Telangana government too is rustling up a first-of-its-kind policy to boost the Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) for the state’s food service industry, a National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) official said.
The policy announcement is expected to be made by minister KT Rama Rao on September 13 at the one-day NRAI national conclave in city, said Shaaz Mehmood, national managing committee member, NRAI.
NRAI Hyderabad chapter head Shankar Krishnamurthy said the industry expects the government to usher in friendly policies that will address vexatious issues such as over-regulation and excessive licencing and ease the challenges .
According to him, the organised restaurants market in city was pegged at 6,037 crore pre-Covid, with standalone restaurants market accounting for 4,657 crore and chains at 1,380 crore. Mahmood pointed out that after business came to a halt in 2020, the industry was able to start reviving itself 2021 onwards and has now hit pre-pandemic turnover levels.
“Business was badly hit and we saw employment losses of 30-35% but things are looking up and we expect to clock 124% growth or approx. 7,500 crore in revenues duri-ng 2022-23 compared to 6,000 crore pre-Covid,” he said.
As per NRAI estimates, the trend was similar at the national level with the sector’s fortunes declining 53% during financial year 2020-21 as compared to an estimated annual turnover of 4,23,865 crore prior to the pandemic and nearly 25% of food business operators shutting shop.
The Indian restaurant industry, which used to employ 73 lakh people prior to Covid, is looking at revenues hitting 4,72,285 crore in 2022-23.
Pointing out that the industry is still grappling with manpower challenges, Mahmood said the NRAI’s Hyderabad chapter is working with the state government of Telangana to address these skilling and employment issues through their ‘Mission Kaam’ initiative.
The NRAI conclave, which will be held for the first time outside Delhi in four decade history, will see participation by top Indian restaurateurs, foreign delegates, investors and bureaucrats across the country.