Minister urges tourism stakeholders to implement UTCS

Kathmandu, March 15

Tourism Minister Yogesh Bhattarai has urged tourism stakeholders to implement a unified tax collection system (UTCS) for the convenience of tourists.

Speaking during a meeting today for planning and preparations for the next fiscal year, the Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) requested all the concerned authorities to coordinate with one another to implement UTCS in the tourism sector.

“We have been receiving several complaints regarding complexities in the tourism tax collection system and tourists are confused about tourism tax in the country due to the federal system,” the minister said, “Hence, it would be better to collect such tourism tax at one place and distribute it to the stakeholders instead of collecting it at different places.”

He further requested the provincial and local governments to come up with a joint plan for a tax collection system.

Likewise, Minister Bhattarai has also directed the provincial and local governments to come up with long-term projects based on the 15th national plan.

“As we have to follow the guidelines of the national plan, it would be better for the concerned authorities to avoid project duplication and support each other to achieve the set targets,” he added.

Meanwhile, the minister also proposed all the stakeholders to divide international and domestic promotional activities among central and provincial governments.

“The provincial government could work on domestic tourism promotion while the central government will be focused on international tourism promotion,” he added.

Talking about the 100 tourist destinations identified by the government for development of tourism products, Tourism Minister Bhattarai said that the ministry from now on will allocate the budget based on the progress of the destinations.

“MoCTCA will no longer allocate any budget for the destinations with poor progress report,” he added.

All the representatives of seven provincial governments, local governments, Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal, Nepal Tourism Board and other concerned authorities were present during the meeting. The meeting was called by MoCTCA to look at the preparations of provincial and local governments for next fiscal year.