The Interim Government plans to introduce a new tax, which will be applied to the turnover of national airlines and whose proceeds will go to strengthening of the tourism sector development fund.
This new tax, not exceeding 1% of the turnover of airlines, will be included in the 2003 Finance Act.
Mr. Elyes Fakhfakh, Minister of Tourism, said Saturday in a statement to TAP during a visit to the Medina of Tunis, that “airlines are making significant turnover in the transportation of tourists.”
This tax, he added, is able to involve all stakeholders in the tourism sector in the promotion and development of this activity.
The Minister noted that “Tunisia is expected to attract new tourism markets, and needs additional financial resources to fund its marketing campaigns,” which need to be “large,” especially as the state contributes to financing these campaigns by up to 80%.
He added that it is essential to develop new mechanisms for financing and involve the private sector and parties benefiting from tourism revenues.
This new measure will involve, firstly, airlines, pending its generalization to include restaurants, hotels and all stakeholders in the tourism industry, Mr. Fakhfakh said.
He said that airlines will be informed of this decision and negotiations are underway with them, since 70% of their revenues come from the transport of tourists. For this, they will be the first to be affected by the development of tourism and the conquest of new markets of which they can benefit.
The Tourism Minister also indicated that his department plans to create, during the next two months, a company specializing in asset management of hotel units suffering from debt.
It should be noted that the volume of debts in the tourism sector exceed 1 billion dinars.