Saturday, August 20

Tiff over Tourism Tax settled — Zahid


PUTRAJAYA: The squabble between Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz and the Sarawak and Sabah state governments over the Tourism Tax issue has been settled, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

He said the matter was discussed and it was agreed during the Cabinet meeting Wednesday to end the row.

At the meeting, he added, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak decided that the matter be put to rest and all the parties involved, whether federal government or state government leaders, not to issue anymore statements on the matter.

Ahmad Zahid was speaking at a press conference after opening a workshop on renewing Islamic education organised by the lslamic Education Coordination Advisory Board (Lepai)here yesterday.

The deputy prime minister said he had personally met with Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Abang   Openg and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman over the issue.

He said they both agreed that tourism promotion required a lot of funds as some states collected only a small amount of tax while others collected a lot.

Ahmad Zahid said the Tourism Tax would be used for promotion purposes not just based on states, but also on the sectors or the importance of a tourism product.

“We also decided to close this book (issue) and open a new book,” he added.

The government had recently decided to impose the Tourism Tax on hotel accommodation at the rates of between RM2.50 and RM20 per room per night with effect from this July 1. — Bernama