Culture and Tourism Minister Ersoy: Accommodation tax postponed until the beginning of the year

Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy made statements regarding the coronavirus (Covid-19) agenda in the program on TRT Haber, where he was a guest.

Stating that the credit guarantee guarantee of foreign currency earning enterprises was increased to 100 percent, Ersoy said, “The guarantee, which is normally 80 percent, was increased to 100 percent. This was a solution proposal for the sector and it has been realized.”

Stating that many reservations were not realized due to the suspension of air traffic and travel restrictions, Ersoy continued as follows:

“Agencies also had demands such as refunding their prepayments. We made a study with our Ministry of Finance and Treasury. We have created a new credit package so that agency advances can be repaid by the hotel. It was announced on Monday. There is a two-week application period. During this period, we will provide 6-month temporary rooted financing to the hotels that apply through public banks. The hotels will be able to repay the advances to their agencies with the revenues they generate from here.”

Regarding the accommodation tax, Ersoy said, “The accommodation tax, which was to be implemented on April 1, was postponed until the beginning of the year. Due to the problems in the sector, it was postponed to January 1, 2021. TÜRSAB dues related to travel agencies will not be taken for 2020. We have also sent the legal arrangement with this to the Parliament. Very soon, it will be included in the first omnibus package.”

Stating that ticket sales are made in museums and ruins affiliated to the Ministry, Ersoy said, “There is a commission income received from here, 20 percent. We increased the commission rate in museums and ruins from 20 percent to 30 percent.”

Reminding that the personnel working in the tourism sector for 5-6 months were kept in suspension, Ersoy said, “Our Ministry of Family, Labor and Social Services did a very fast work and published a new opinion. Now, suspended staff will also be able to benefit from the short-time working program. There was also a minimum wage support, which was extended until the end of this year.”

“Our request is that everyone abides by the disciplinary rules announced”

Expressing their hope that coronavirus cases in Turkey will peak and decline around April 15, Ersoy continued his words as follows:

“Our prediction is that the virus will be completely resolved inside towards the end of May. Our request is for everyone to comply with the disciplinary rules announced. Citizens who do not comply should be warned by other citizens. It should not be expected only from the government, state and other official authorities. This is a civic duty. Our prediction is that the problems inside will be resolved by Eid al-Fitr.”

Explaining that the aim is to first control the virus within Turkey, Ersoy said, “Our aim is to ensure that tourist traffic and air traffic is reopened from countries that have managed to control the virus. As of the Ramadan Feast, we think that the tourism season will start again in the regions with the domestic market mobilization.”

Ersoy stated that near and long-dated reservation cancellations are also experienced in Turkey as in the whole world, and said, “But the pleasing part is that senior officials of foreign tour operators say that Turkey receives the least number of cancellations compared to its peers.”

Stating that forward-looking bookings have started, albeit to a lesser extent, Ersoy emphasized that Turkey’s image regarding its health infrastructure is important.

Regarding Turkey’s target for the number of tourists, Ersoy said, “We need to watch how the process will be completed. Of course, it is no longer possible to meet the target of 58 million for this year, but we will meet it with the least loss. First of all, we will overcome this crisis in the fastest way possible. Afterwards, we will complete our losses in the least way by providing the old traffic quickly from the countries that have managed to overcome it.”

Pointing out that it would not be right to test Turkey’s tourism with this year, Ersoy said, “We have very serious plans and targets for 2023 and beyond. We will recreate new strategies if necessary. I do not have the slightest concern about the 2023 figures. There may have been a loss in 2020. If the virus is completely resolved in 2021, we will quickly recapture the 2021 targets. In 2022 and 2023, we can easily reach the targets we want with very intense promotion and perception operations.”

Pointing out that they are promoting tourism more intensively than any other country in the world, Ersoy said:

“When you look at the January-February data, our results were going very well despite the fact that we started to close the doors in February and the case started to spread around the world. Everyone should be comfortable. The recovery will be the fastest in Turkey. Afterwards, we will see a very rapid improvement in passenger traffic. We will quickly reach the figures we first announced.”

“We are making all our preparations for tourism”

Stating that he predicts that the tourism season will be extended this year, Ersoy concluded his words as follows:

“As the cabinet, we are taking it in a very controlled manner. First, we will take care of our own health and the inside. Then we will provide the necessary financing, and the Ministry of Finance and Treasury is taking very meticulous, fast and serious measures, including support packages. We are making all our preparations for tourism promotion, air transportation and transportation of lines.

Okay, there has been a worldwide disruption, but we will be very fast in compensating for this and we will get out quickly. Everyone should be calm, there is no need to panic. From the sector’s point of view, we will solve this problem and we will set an example. Everyone should relax, we know what needs to be done and we are taking the steps step by step.”

Source: https://www.dunya.com/ekonomi/kultur-ve-turizm-bakani-ersoy-konaklama-vergisi-yilbasina-ertelendi-haberi-466865

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