Michael Fitzmaurice has responded to inaccurate media reports in recent days which suggested that members of the Independent Alliance were in favour of raising the 9% tourism industry tax – saying that such reports are “totally and utterly wrong”.
He went on to say “In fact it will be our policy in any possible new administration or in opposition that this tax is an essential part of our tourism industry and it has to be a central plank of tourism policy into the future”.
“The 9% tax rate in the tourism industry in hotels and restaurants has been a resounding success and it must be retained into the future. The lower rate has meant that many hotels and other businesses in the tourism industry have been handed a lifeline and saved from going under, and many jobs have been kept because of the lower rate. Many hotels and restaurants have to contend with paying huge rate bills and I have also proposed a rates review for all businesses around the country especially those providing employment. So I am totally behind the retention of the 9% tax into the future. It is a way of preserving jobs and that must be a priority” he concluded.