FAITH MONTHLY UPDATE - DECEMBER 2016

6th January 2017

To, All Members, 

Sub: FAITH MONTHLY UPDATE - DECEMBER 2016
 
Dear Friends,
 
Placed below please find FAITH Monthly Update for December 2016 on the activities by FAITH, which is self-explanatory
 
With best regards, 
 
Lally Mathews
Hony. Secretary
 

 
From: consultingceo@faithtourismindia.in [mailto:consultingceo@faithtourismindia.in] 
To: iato@airtelmail.in 
 
Subject: FAITH MONTHLY UPDATE - DECEMBER 2016
 
Dear BOD, EC (member associations) & Cause Partners,  
 
Please find below a brief of our key activities for December 2016. Please share the same with your complete general membership so that the whole tourism industry across India is aligned.
 
Pre-Budget note with MOT: MOF invited MOT to prepare & submit the recommendations to the Union budget FY 17-18. Thereafter, MOT, FAITH & member’s partners had multiple sessions to discuss the possible recommendations & to prepare the budget note for the Tourism Secretary to carry forward to the Revenue Secretary. This is the third annual consecutive partnership between MOT & FAITH to finalise the draft of the pre-budget recommendations for MOT. 
 
The key recommendations by FAITH which were discussed for inclusion:  For domestic tourism : domestic holiday tax credit to salary payers , a lower GST rate of 5%, 24 hours india Haats in all major towns & cities,  For travel agents/ domestic operators : an inter- ministry dispute resolution mechanism to discuss address critical issues such as commissions,  technology disruptions on business models etc., presumptive model of taxation for GST  & other GST recommendations, For mice: double weighted expensing by corporates on domestics conferences / events in India, global bidding fund, a mega convention destination,  For hotels & resorts: infrastructure status, increase of scope of section 35 ad for ongoing upgradation,  lower GST rate , land bank for hotels & resorts, centralised e- approval system, for tourist transporters: land banks for parking destinations, seamless national e- highway cards etc., For heritage: Double weighted depreciation under section 35 ad, mega heritage tourism zones, special Rural & remote fund for equity / debt support for heritage  tourism operators in these areas, management of museums under PPP For inbound tourism: low GST rate in line with global practices, more global tourism offices presence, for adventure :  mega tourism destination - Himalayas, North East & special Rural & remote fund for equity/ debt support for adventure tourism operators etc. 
 
Infrastructure status for hotels: As a follow up of the pre-budget meeting of FAITH with the FM, the commerce ministry has been keen to take forward the recommendations on the infrastructure status for hotels in the budget, mid-tier category (₹25-50 crores & above excluding land cost). An economic & competitive rationale was prepared to enable MOC develop the merits of the proposal for the same for MOF.
 
GST Training for MOT: MOT invited FAITH to train the complete bureaucracy of MOT on GST, its structure, its rationale, its implications for tourism in India, the current status & the proposed recommendations. A comprehensive session was held for the MOT team to enable them to appreciate the basics of this topic & the implications of the proposed GST recommendations for tourism. A follow up session will be held in subsequent months raising the level of complication & technicality for these officers.
 
Conventions bidding fund: As a follow up to the pre-budget meeting of FAITH with the FM & to promote foreign exchange from tourism, the commerce ministry was very keen to take forward the proposal for setup of a global conventions bidding fund. Once set up this will enable & fund Indian PCOs, hotels, convention bureaus to bid more scientifically & technically for world scale mice events, years in advance. A discussion was held between MOC & MOT on the approach to the same & a background note was prepared.
 
Domestic tourism - Open house: A detailed interactive session was held with the general membership of ADTOI on the strategic importance of domestic tourism of India, strategies required to grow it & the partnership between ADTOI & FAITH to create awareness with policy makers at the central & at the state government levels.
 
SEIS status: To enable further monetisation of forex earned through tax credits & Setoffs, MOC is carrying forward our recommendations to MOF on enhancing SEIS limits for hotels & tour operators to 10% for, 3% & 5% respectively. A meeting was held with commerce secretary on the same
 
GST recommendations to GST commissioner: A discussion was held with MOT & they have decided to forward the detailed GST recommendations to the GST commissioner, which contain sector specific GST recommendations for travel agents, domestic & inbound tour operators, PCOs, tourist transport operators & hotels & reports.
 
Way forward for technology disruption: Business platforms such as hotels inventory aggregation & short term rentals funded by global funds are threatening business as usual conditions in India for tourism service & supply providers. To identify a way forward, a second in the series of meetings on the same, this time between FAITH, HAI & FHRAI. Next steps on the same are being contemplated to engage with the complete ecosystem of tour operators & hoteliers.
 
eVisa policy changes: Much demanded changes to the eVisa policy regime were announced in December by the FM. This has long been pursued both with the MOC & with MOT who have thereafter been pursuing both the MOF & MOH on the same. More positive changes are required & more are expected.
 
These were some of the headline activities that FAITH engaged in during the month of December. It is a very challenging time, with policy paralysis in many states, demonisation derailing tourism demand, uncertain global conditions & technology disrupting conventional hospitality, tour & transport operations business models.  These are unprecedented, diverse external challenges happening all at the same confronting Indian tourism.
 
So wish that you Keep your faith.....but Challenge your assumptions... ..& in all stay peaceful & prosperous in 2017 ! Jai Hind!
 
Thanks & with warm regards,
 
Sent by:
Kapil Jhingan
On behalf of 
 
AASHISH GUPTA
CONSULTING CEO
Mobile: +91 9810504873