By Poyi (Natalie) Leung
The Macau Government is going to remove the MOP 19 ferry departure tax charged to passengers to help attract visitors to the city.
The Executive Council yesterday announced the draft of the administrative regulation to “cancel the fee for using the boarding and disembarkation facilities”.
The council’s spokesperson Leong Heng Teng said the change will come into effect 30 days after the administrative regulation is promulgated.
The current levy stands at MOP 19 and is charged by ferry operators upon ticket purchase, and is returned to the government directly.
“Thanks to Macau’s economic development in recent years and the increased revenues of the SAR Government, the proportion of the departure tax in the city’s overall revenues has continued to decrease, and charging the tax […] has gradually become insignificant,” Leong told reporters.
“At the same time, Macau is striving to develop tourism and abolishing the departure tax will help maintain the city’s attractiveness for spending visitors,” he added.
In 2010, the SAR Government received MOP 183 million in ferry departure tax.
The levy was introduced in 1991 for passengers who exited Macau by ferry in order to support the maintenance and expansion of the terminal’s facilities and other soft/hardware.