Ba­gan cul­tural zone to get e-ticket sys­tem

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - Front Page - EI EI THU eiei­thu@mm­times.com

Vis­i­tors to the Ba­gan Her­itage zone will start pay­ing for ad­mis­sion to the site by us­ing an e-ticket sys­tem on Mon­day, says an of­fi­cial of the Ba­gan Arche­ol­ogy and Na­tional Mu­seum Depart­ment.

THE gov­ern­ment will be­gin col­lect­ing en­trance fees to the an­cient Ba­gan her­itage zone us­ing an e-ticket sys­tem start­ing on Mon­day, ac­cord­ing to the Ba­gan Ar­chae­ol­ogy and Na­tional Mu­seum Depart­ment.

The new sys­tem is be­ing in­stalled by Shin Than Thu Co Ltd, a pub­lic com­pany that won the ten­der ear­lier this month, U Aung Aung Kyaw, di­rec­tor of the depart­ment, said on Thurs­day.

Shin Than Thu won with a bid of K7 bil­lion for the project in the 201819 fi­nan­cial year.

In 2016, the col­lec­tion of Ba­gan’s en­trance fees was given to a pri­vate en­ter­prise. The Myan­mar Tourism Fed­er­a­tion won the ten­der to col­lect the fees for five years, but in Au­gust this year, the Min­istry of Re­li­gious Af­fairs in­vited a new ten­der for fee col­lec­tion to switch to the e-ticket pay­ment sys­tem.

Ac­cord­ing to a con­tract signed be­tween the min­istry and the fed­er­a­tion, the gov­ern­ment re­ceives 90 per­cent of the pro­ceeds, while the fed­er­a­tion keeps 6pc for hir­ing staff and tourism pro­mo­tion, and 4pc goes to re­gional de­vel­op­ment and tem­ple restora­tion.

In fis­cal 2017-18, Ba­gan re­ceived about 300,000 in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors, who paid K25,000 (US$15.67) each and stayed an av­er­age of three days. The fed­er­a­tion col­lected K7.5 bil­lion in en­trance fees last year.

“The com­pany has to pay K7 bil­lion to the gov­ern­ment within a year re­gard­less of how much they col­lect from tourists. Also there will be no more shar­ing of rev­enue for re­gional de­vel­op­ment and pagoda main­te­nance,” U Aung Aung Kyaw said.

An en­trance fee for Ba­gan was first levied in 1995, and all of the money went to the state.

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