Morocco imposes new tax on airline tickets

Morocco will impose as of April 1, 2014 a tax of 100 dirhams (about 9 euros) on airline tickets that are bought in the country to international destinations, applicable to both Moroccans and foreigners, with the aim of strengthening and promote the tourism sector. Moroccan Tourism Minister, Lahcen Haddad, has said during a press conference in Rabat that the tax would apply to economic class ticket, while first class and business will have a tax of 400 dirhams (36 euros). These fees will not be imposed on other means of transport and, for now, only be limited to airline tickets, either low cost or traditional lines.

The plan is that the expected revenues generated by these taxes will be transferred to the Moroccan National Tourist Office and to the Fund for the Support of Social Cohesion .

In 2012, the tourism sector represented 7.8% of GDP in this North African country, and the number of travelers who visited the country that year reached 9.4 million. Morocco aims to reach by the end of 2015 a total of 13.7 million tourists, to create 646,000 jobs compared to 480,000 in 2012 and achieve revenues of 85 billion dirhams (7,6 billion euros ) compared to 58 billion dirhams ( about 5,2 billion euros ) in 2012 .

Currently, the budget for the promotion of Moroccan tourism is financed through the state subsidies that are an average of 300 million dirhams per year ( about 27 million euros) and fees of customers in hotels, which sum up to 100 million dirhams ( about 9 million euros)

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