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India sets it sights on becoming hot cruise spot

Posted by Anita Dunham-Potter On October - 4 - 2007

Image courtesy of Indian Ministry of Tourism According to reports in Indian newspapers, India may soon become a hot spot for foreign cruise liners. The Indian government plans to exempt cruise lines from income tax, excise duty, Customs duty, corporate tax and service tax. The tax breaks are aimed to entice more tourists to the region.

The proposal states that foreign cruise lines would be given tax incentives until the Indian cruise market matures to be self-sustaining. Cruise travelers would need to pay just a one-time service tax before embarking upon a cruise. All services like tours, recreation, etc., would be tax exempt.

Additionally, some Indian entrepreneurs are looking into starting cruise lines and may benefit from a zero tax plan in order to compete with the larger more established foreign cruise lines. At present, there are no Indian companies operating cruises along Indian shores.

The Indian shipping ministry is also in talks with coastal communities in regards to setting up docking facilities for cruise liners. Kochin Port Trust has already lined up plans for cruise facilitation infrastructure. The port trust is setting up a dock facility on public-private partnership.

The tax concessions are expected to be finalized after the Indian Cabinet goes through the first ever policy on cruise tourism in the coming weeks.

Stay tuned….

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