Tourism Cess fund for leisure industry development
FUND: Minister of Tourism, Anura Bandaranaike will take action to
collect the CESS fund which is now with the government Treasury. A sum
of over Rs. 300 million collected in the form of cess from tourism is
lying in the Treasury.
Minister who held a meeting with only the Industry members sans any
government officials promised he would take up this matter soon and
recall the money to be used for the development of tourism.
The cess fund was collected from hoteliers, travel agencies and also
from Embarkation Tax at the Colombo international airport. "Steps should
be taken to utilise this money for the development of tourism," the
The leisure industry officials also urged the Minister to fast track
the implementation of the Tourism Act, which has already been passed by
the Parliament and the Minister promised to implement the Act as soon as
possible which would iron out many problems facing the industry today.
The members of the industry also pointed out that better marketing
tools are needed to promote the country internationally. He also
promised to look into this.
The Minister was also asked to play a prominent part at the
forthcoming World Travel Market in London from November 6 to 9 and
requested the Minister to address the international media.
The Minister also promised to take up the issue of adverse travel
warnings with Ambassadors of relevant countries.
"We are happy with the outcome of this meeting," said most of the
members of the trade who attend the meeting.