Kathmandu, May 24
Hoteliers have sought customs duty waiver on various imported goods used for construction and expansion of hotels and restaurants.
At a time when the government is busy drafting the budget for fiscal year 2019-20, the Hotel Association Nepal (HAN) — umbrella body representing tourist standard hotels in country — has urged the government to give customs waiver facility on import of such products and also give income tax waiver facility for hoteliers for at least 15 years.
Issuing a 14-point recommendation to the government, HAN has sought customs duty waiver facilities on imported products for hotel construction like decorative goods, kitchenware, bathroom fittings, air-conditioners, air-coolers, heaters, televisions, phone sets, beds and curtains, among others.
Similarly, hoteliers have also sought VAT rebate on different food products that hotels and restaurants sell. “Hotels and restaurants consume more than 90 per cent of agricultural products from the domestic market itself for food. Thus, the government should promote hotels and restaurant businesses by giving VAT rebate,” as per Shreejana Rana, president of HAN.
HAN has also urged government to ease casino operation in the country and revisit the current rate of casino royalty.
Likewise, hoteliers have also said that the budget should focus on expanding Nepal’s air connectivity and the capacity of Nepal Airlines Corporation to draw more foreign tourists and boost the tourism industry. “As Nepal Airlines has not been able to expand its fleet and international air connectivity, the government should focus on bringing in more international airline companies to Nepal,” as per HAN officials.
HAN has also asked the government to give cash incentives to travel and tour operators promoting the Meeting Incentive Conference Exhibition (MICE) tourism in the country.
Hoteliers have also sought effective policies and proper programmes to promote the Visit Nepal 2020 tourism campaign and make it successful.
A version of this article appears in print on May 25, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.