Politics

Thailand weights ‘pandemic insurance’ tax on tourists

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The Tourism and Sports Ministry is considering a tax of 300 baht ($ 9,3) or less per person for foreign arrivals that could cover pandemic insurance, once inbound flights and tourism activities resume in the country.

Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, the tourism, and sports minister said the tax would be collected once foreigners arrive by air, land or sea transport.

The scheme is part of the 20-year national strategic plan that requires government agencies to have the recurring income to sustain and stabilize the national economy.

The levy will be added to the tourism fund managed by the ministry that aims to rebuild and develop tourism supply chains here, as well as offer safety and security protection for tourists.

He said this idea was initiated last year but was delayed because of the pandemic. Now is the right time to launch collection, said Phiphat.

The goal is to have tourists entering via air travel charged as a part of their air tickets, but the government has not finalized how collection for land and sea transport would work.

“The pandemic has had a severe impact on tourism confidence, and the tourism fund should set aside a budget for state agencies to carry on when looking after tourists affected by the pandemic,” he said.

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