Sabah hoteliers want tourism tax deferred to March 2018

Sabah hoteliers want tourism tax deferred to March 2018
A visitor taking a photo of Mount Kinabalu in Sabah with his mobile phone.
PHOTO: The New Paper

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah hoteliers hope that the tourism tax would only be enforced after July next year as many of them had already quoted room rates minus the tax until March 2018.

They also said that time was needed to update their computer systems to accommodate the additional tax.

The tax is scheduled to be enforced on July 1.

Sabah Hotel Association president Christopher Chan said the industry players had voiced these concerns at a meeting with state Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry permanent secretary Datu Rosmadi Datu Sulai on Monday.

Others at the meeting were Malaysian Association of Hotels Sabah chapter, Malaysia Budget Hotel Association, Sabah Tourist Association and Sabah Backpackers Operators Association.

Chan said the main concern was the legal consequences if they were to revise their room rates to include the tourism tax.

"We cannot simply change the quotations overnight as many of these are valid at least until March 31 next year," he said.

He said some hotels were already facing cancellations after they told their customers of the additional tax.

Chan said the updating of the hotels' computer systems due to the tourism tax would incur costs as well as time to train staff.

"We hope all these issues will be resolved before the tax is enforced," he added.

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