New COVID-19 lockdown threatens mass bankruptcy of restaurants and cafes
Nearly 90 percent of public catering facilities might close down due to the new COVID-19 lockdown. The relevant federation made such an unoptimistic forecast. In Nur-Sultan alone, more than a third of public eating facilities closed this year for good. In Atyrau, 65 percent of eating places went bankrupt. Chairperson of the Federation of Restaurateurs and Hoteliers Veronika Nurpeisova said that the situation in the industry is deplorable throughout Kazakhstan. On average, almost every owner of a restaurant or a cafe owes at least nine million tenge (US$21,028) to the lessors, suppliers and staff. The debts of restaurateurs doubled over the summer, while their profits decreased by 80 percent compared to the pre-quarantine period. Restaurateurs turned to the relevant authorities with a request to allow them to increase their working hours by three hours so they could at least slightly improve their financial situation.