Tuesday July 17, 2012
Move to offer tax incentives for hotel refurbishment
GEORGE TOWN: The Tourism Ministry is preparing to submit proposals to the Finance Ministry to offer tax incentives for the refurbishment of hotels nationwide.
Its minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen said the move was conceptualised after a dialogue session with hoteliers about six weeks ago.
“Under the proposal, the Finance Ministry is to relook into the incentives offered to hoteliers. At present, new four- and five-star hotels are being given tax incentives from this year, concurrent with what is being offered in Sabah and Sarawak.
“Incentives given to star-rated hotels are meant to ensure their quality,” she told a press conference at a hotel in Batu Ferringhi here yesterday.
Dr Ng also said her ministry was developing a spa therapy programme to turn Malaysia into a high-end tourist destination.
“To grow the industry, it is necessary to reduce foreign therapists gradually and increase local ones.
“A foreign tourist spends an average of RM2,400 while on holiday here, with those from the Middle East and Russia spending about RM7,600 and RM9,300, respectively.
“Therefore, we need to offer more activities as my ministry hopes to increase the tourists’ expenditure by 1.5 times in 2020, or RM4,000,” she said.