Ex­empt cruise tourism un­der GST regime: Ship­ping Min­istry

Maritime Gateway - - News -

The Ship­ping Min­istry has asked the GST Coun­cil to ex­empt cruise tourism un­der the new in­di­rect tax regime, in line with ma­jor cruis­ing nations. At present, cruise tourism is not taxed and the ship­ping min­istry wants to keep it out of the GST regime in or­der to boost the in­dus­try.

To make In­dia a global hot spot for cruise tourism, a pol­icy is likely this month as steps are un­der­way to ex­pand num­ber of cruise ves­sels to 700 from about 70 at present. Trans­porta­tion of pas­sen­gers (with or without be­long­ings) by in­land wa­ter­ways is not a tax­able ser­vice un­der the Fi­nance Act, 1994 and the same rule should be ap­plied to “cruise ships” op­er­at­ing do­mes­ti­cally or in­ter­na­tion­ally. To pro­mote cruise tourism, an ac­tion plan is also on the anvil that will in­clude key steps to bring it on par with in­ter­na­tional stan­dards. A slew of mea­sures are al­ready been taken to boost in­fra­struc­ture that in­clude build­ing cruise ter­mi­nals at five ma­jor ports – Mumbai, Goa, New Man­ga­lore, Chennai and Cochin.

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