TAAN Provides 11 Point Appeal to Revive Tourism Sector
Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) has given 11 points appeal to revive the tourism sector. TAAN has said that billions of businessmen will be affected and millions of workers will be unemployed.
TAAN has announced a relief package to rehabilitate and revitalize the tourism sector and appealed government for guardianship. In their 11 points of appeal, they have said that trekking entrepreneurs have invested billions of rupees by taking loans to make Nepal Tourism Year 2020 a success. So the government has to extend the period and waive the interest as they are unable to pay the bank interest.
They have also said that banks are required to invest a certain percentage in the deprived sector. Therefore, the budget should include the trekking and mountaineering business in the group and provide at least 2 million concessional loans (2 percent) without collateral. If banks in Nepal cannot provide concessional loans to trekking companies at low-interest rates, the private sector can also take loans from low-interest rates financial institutions such as the World Bank, ADB, IMF, Chinese banks on the guarantee of the Government of Nepal.
In the past, there was a VAT exemption on the daily wages of porters, guides, climbing sherpas, yaks and mules for hiking and mountaineering. Currently, VAT is levied on it. Therefore, They have strongly appealed to announce the VAT exemption on the daily wages of such destitute people in remote areas through the budget statement from next year.
Nepal has been levying 13 percent tax due to which its package is more expensive than other countries. Therefore, They also have a strong appeal for exemption of tax in the tourism business. Similarly, they have urged to announce through a special program budget statement the amount collected from TIMS and the amount deposited so far in the established workers’ welfare fund to protect the displaced pedestrian workers.
As there is no possibility of immediate foreign tourist arrivals, government, semi-government and private employees are required to visit Nepal once a year. Of these, trekkers only take guides through a compulsory licensed trekking company. They have appealed to make arrangements to go through the budget statement and to announce in the budget statement that half of the rent of those who run trekking business in expensive cities like Kathmandu and Pokhara will be borne by the government.
They have also suggested to rescue the stranded trekkers and provide free food items to those who want to stay in the place immediately and to provide safe transportation to those who want to go home free of cost.