Minister of Tourism and Arts, Charles Banda says the Tourism Levy is not there to finance the private sector in the country.
Speaking when the Tourism Council of Zambia (TCZ) paid a courtesy call on him at Kwacha House today, the Minister said there is no private sector paying the tourism levy but that the clients were paying for utilizing the hospitality services.
“Some people have come to his office saying the private sector is contributing to Tourism Development Fund (TDF),” said Mr Banda.
The law maker said private sector participation means that the private players bring their money to the table to be able to participate in the development of the industry that is dotted through-out the country.
Mr Banda said the money raised through the levy has specific areas to cure including research, product development and marketing in a bid to grow the sector.
And newly appointed TCZ chairperson Vincent Mupwaya said the council has pending issues including the service charge and TDF.
Mr. Mupwaya said the council has noted with concern that once Tourism Levy is collected, it is taken straight to Control 99 which is the account for the government.
The chairperson said members are worried and requested that the Minister could engage with his colleagues at Ministry of Finance and see if it could to be catered for separately to assist the private sector with their projects.
The TCZ Chairperson has requested the Minister to reconsider attending the council’s quarterly breakfast meetings that touch on all the sub-sectors of the sector where problems are shared and find the solutions to them.
Darlingtone Kabambe is a Media and Communication Studies student at the University of Zambia (UNZA) with special interest in political news, current affairs, community and education news.