Ministry wants to delay departure levy


Unpopular move: Lawmakers from both sides of the political divide had questioned the need for the levy, arguing that it would affect tourist arrivals. — Reuters

THE Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry wants the implementation of the departure levy to be delayed until after Visit Malaysia 2020, says Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi.

The Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister said he would personally raise the matter with Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.

“I very much agree (to the proposal to defer the levy implementation) but the question raised should be directed to the Finance Minister,” he said.

“However, because I had agreed with it, I will try to discuss the matter with him.”

Datuk Jalaluddin Alias (BN-Jelebu) had suggested the delay, saying that Opposition MPs had been appro­ached by an airline over the issue.

“They said that the departure levy on Sept 1 would affect in-bound tourists.

“They asked us to ask Pakatan Harapan to defer the levy until after Visit Malaysia 2020 so that we can attract as many tourists during the period,” Jalaluddin said.

The Departure Levy Bill 2019 was passed in Parliament on April 10, for implementation on June 1, before it was deferred to Sept 1.

Lawmakers from both sides of the political divide had questioned the need for the levy, arguing that it would affect tourist arrivals.

The levy on air travellers leaving the country was aimed at encouraging domestic tourism.


   

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