Africa: Tanzanian tour operators give up hope on import duty exemptions
Tour operators in Tanzania are losing hope on the government’s delay to enforce the import duty exemptions on tourist vehicles as the clock ticks towards the onset of the high tourism season.
During the 2018/19-budget session, Parliament amended the East African Community Customs Management Act 2004 to be able to provide import duty exemption on numerous kinds of automobiles for transportation of tourists.
Tourism is really a key sector of the economy since it may be the country’s largest forex earner raking in over $2 billion annually, equal to 17% of the national GPD, official data indicates.
But six months later nearly, the exemption has ended up being a clear promise, because the government is dragging its feet, prompting the Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (TATO) to get clarification.
The Chairman of the association with over 300 members over the national country, Mr. Wilbard Chambulo, said his members are caught in a catch-22 after having discarded a genuine amount of old vehicles, looking to import the duty-free ones ready for transporting tourists in the forthcoming high season beginning in mid-December 2018.
“The majority of us are stranded because the national government is silent on the import duty exemption. We just want word from the federal government if the commitment was either false or real,” Mr. Chambulo explained.
The TATO chief said members of the association were moved by the State’s decision to scrap the import duty, justifying that the tax exemption was a sigh of relief since it would save them $9,727 for every imported tourist vehicle.