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Sat 16 Jun 2018 12:30 AM

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Tourism chief hails Abu Dhabi's move to cut fees

Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak says decision to reduce tourism fees will support hotel occupancy levels in the emirate

Tourism chief hails Abu Dhabi's move to cut fees
Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi.

Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has hailed a decision to reduce tourism and municipality fees, saying it will support hotel occupancy levels.

He said that the Executive Council’s decision will enhance the emirate’s international tourism competitiveness by strengthening its value proposition and by encouraging investments in the hospitality and tourism sectors.

In a statement, Al Mubarak added that Abu Dhabi’s hotels will be further able to record high occupancy rates compared to the regional and global tourism markets.

"With this decision, hotels and hospitality establishments can achieve more growth and stay in line with the continuous development of the emirate’s infrastructure and its wide variety of cultural and leisure attractions. This is in addition to DCT Abu Dhabi’s promotional focus in key markets, adding impetus to these success stories and raising the occupancy rate in the emirate," he said in a comments published by state news agency WAM.

"The adoption of the proposal will enhance Abu Dhabi’s attractiveness to investors and support the development of additional tourism projects and hotels. It will also strengthen the emirate’s position as a leading tourism destination for both business and leisure."

He added: "With the fees now being minimal and having a limited impact on accommodation costs, this will help us achieve our vision to strengthen the emirate’s position as the preferred destination for tourists from across the region and beyond."

Saif Saeed Ghobash, Under-Secretary, DCT Abu Dhabi, also welcomed the cut in fees, saying: "This move will attract further investment to the capital and underpin Abu Dhabi’s aim to expand its tourism proposition and increase visitor numbers.

"With the business and travel sectors being so essential to the economy, this initiative further assists the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi’s aims to bolster the emirate’s competitiveness on the global stage."

On Tuesday, Abu Dhabi Executive Committee approved a proposal to reduce tourism fees from 6 percent to 3.5 percent and municipality fees to 2 percent.

The committee also sanctioned a proposal to reduce municipality fees for hotel rooms from AED15 to AED10 per room per night. Additionally, the fees will now be collected half-yearly, rather than on a monthly basis.

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