Tour operators’ body urges govt to end cascading impact of multiple taxes

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 11, 2021

Wants govt to treat tourism sector on par with IT industry

The Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO) has urged the Centre to take measures to solve the challenges of multiple taxation faced by tour operators.

It demanded to either lower the GST charged from tour operators or allow input tax credit and end the cascading impact of multiple taxes.

“The tour operators suffer from multiple taxation at different levels as they offer multitude of services ….for which they have to pay GST at about 18-23 per cent. Further, on their total billing, they pay GST at the rate 5 per cent (without input tax credit). This compares unfavourably with neighbouring countries where GST rates of about 6-8 per cent are charged from tour operators,” IATO said in a statement.

‘One Country, One Tax’

The body asked the government to treat the tourism industry as a “deemed exporter at par with the IT Industry.” Stating that though the tourism sector earns valuable foreign exchange, it is not exempted from IGST even though it provides services to the foreign clients. “IATO recommends suitable amendments to correct this anomaly which will not require inbound tour operators to charge GST from Foreign Tour Operators. This will conform with government’s One Country One Tax objective too,” the statement added.

Double taxation

It added that the imposition of IGST and TCS (Tax Collected at Source) should be removed from composite tours as tourists, in a bid to avoid this double taxation, book tours in other countries leading to loss of business for Indian tour operators.

“With regards to Service Export From India Scheme (SEIS), IATO requests that benefit for 2019-20 be notified at the earliest and the benefit to be continued in new Foreign Trade Policy for 2021-25 at enhanced rate from the present rate of 7 per cent to 10 per cent,” the industry body said in its budget representation to the government.

Published on January 11, 2021

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