The St Lucia government intends to introduce a tourism levy next month that it said will help finance the marketing and development of its industry.
Government said it has been holding extensive consultation over the past two years with key stakeholders in the tourism industry and that the implementation of this tax follows the introduction of the Tourism Levy Act and amendments to the St Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA) Act.
According to the authorities, from Dec. 15, guests staying at registered accommodation service providers will be required pay a prescribed nightly levy on their stay.
In the two tier system, guests will be charged either three or six US dollars per person per night, depending on a room rate below or above US$120. A rate of 50 percent of the tourism levy will apply to guests who are 12-17 years at the end of their stay. Children under 12 are free.
In addition, the government will from Dec. 1, reduce the Value Added Tax from 10 to seven per cent for tourism accommodation service providers.
The government believes that the levy will strengthen its tourism appeal by increasing its marketing and support tourism development with a tax that correlates to visitor arrivals.
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