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KERALA TOURISM will get 15% more fund in next fin year
  • January 2014

Kerala finance minister KM Mani has allocated Rs 206 crore for Tourism sector and out of this Rs 40 cr will be the marketing and publicity fund.  He also allocated Rs. 2 Cr., for conducting the second edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale in Dec 2014.

In his record breaking 12th budget for 2014-15 presented in the state Assembly today, Jan 24, 2014, Finance Minister Mr. K M Mani reduced the luxury tax structure during the offseason period  ( June to August) from 12 % to 5 % and he has also reduced Tax for convention halls and auditorium, (Rent above INR 20,000/- ) to 10% from 20% and this will give some relief for the Convention and conference sector. The service apartments given on daily rent basis had been slapped with a 12.5 per cent tax.

There will be price hike for various commodities including all cooking oil except coconut oil, two-wheelers, cars and luxury cars and Indian made foreign liquor. Travelling in luxury buses, taxis and autos will be more expensive as their taxes has also been increased. The budget sharply increased the purchase tax on imported vehicles, lumpsum tax on motor cars of various capacities and sizes, new generation caravans and inter-state coaches. Claiming that the levies were being rationalised, the budget proposed to collect around Rs 260 crore from motor vehicles and transport sector alone. This is not only expected to affect the affluent but also the common man may have to pay more to travel in auto rickshaws.

Industry sources opined that “ Heavy Taxation, which is imposed to all types of Vehicles will be a burden for transport sector and 10% increase in the foreign made liquor also have some bad effect for tourism sector”.

But Mr. Abraham George, President of Kerala Travel Mart Society welcomed the budget provision, especially the increased allocation of fund for tourism sector especially for marketing. The reduction of luxury tax during the offseason will give more boosts to Monsoon and Ayurveda tourism. This will attract more domestic tourist during the offseason period. The reduction of taxation by 10% for the MICE segment also will be a good initiative. But he requested to Finance Minister to consider that the three months offseason period, which is stated from June to August in FM’s budget speech,   would be extend to April to September period to overcome the global economic crisis, which is already affected, very badly in the travel and tourism sector of the state.  

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