PETALING JAYA - There are plans to exempt locals staying at three-star hotels and lower-grade accommodation from the new tourism tax, Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah said.
"We are studying this and will be making an announcement soon," he said after launching The Global Entrepreneurship Competition here yesterday.
He added that collection of the tax would be handled by the Customs Department, which has a system in place for the classification of hotels.
The tourism tax is set to be enforced from July 1, with hotel guests charged between RM2.50 (S$0.80) and RM20 for overnight stays depending on the hotel classification.
The tax rate, charged on a per-room, per-night basis, is RM20 for five-star accommodation, RM15 for four-star, RM10 for three-star, RM5 for two-star and RM2.50 for non-rated accommodation, including budget hotels.
Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz said the revenue collected would be used to promote Malaysia overseas and upgrade tourism facilities.
The tourism tax is expected to bring in RM654.62mil if there is a 60 per cent occupancy rate at the more than 11 million hotel rooms nationwide.