PHUKET: The Phuket Provincial Administration Organization (OrBorJor) has finally won its battle to introduce a tax on hotel room revenue. The tax is payable at a rate of 0.2%, effective November 1 this year. The announcement was made yesterday at The Metropole hotel in Phuket Town by senior members of the Phuket Tourism Association (PTA), the Thai Hotels Association – Southern Chapter (THA), and the chairman of the OrBorJor’s Tourism Committee, Hanchai Chantarachota. The rate will remain at 0.2% until the end of April next year, when it will rise to 0.5%. On October 1, 2001, it will increase again, to 1%. The tax is payable quarterly, with the first payment due by February 10 next year. “The OrBorJor is currently revising the proposed penalties for non-payment, as requested by hotel representatives,” said K. Hanchai. A memo from the office of the Provincial Governor, Pongpayome Vasaputi, which gave the go-ahead for the tax to be collected, also stated that representatives of the hotel industry will be entitled to attend committee meetings with the OrBorJor to “acknowledge” how the tax is to be spent. However, the representatives will have no voting rights; the OrBorJor alone will decide how the revenue is spent. Initially, the tax will be collected by officials from the OrBorJor. In October next year, collection will be handed over to the Provincial Revenue Department, which will make collections on the OrBorJor’s behalf.
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