IAAPI appeals to Centre to levy uniform 10 per cent tax

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Mumbai, Jan 25 (UNI) Indian Association of Amusement Parks and Industries (IAAPI) has urged the Union Government to levy a uniform ten per cent tax on entertainment for 2008-09 against the present 10 to 25 per cent tax in various states.

IAAPI President Mr V G P Ravidas, who has submitted a memorandum in this context to Union Finance minister P Chidambaram, told UNI here today that the amusement industry is already under heavy burden of local entertainment tax since the last few years.

''This industry can survive only by absorbing either one of the taxes. IAAPI is also striving to get the amusement and leisure industry acknowledged as a vital part of the social infrastructure'', he said.

If the Union Government implements an uniform entertainment tax, then the growth rate would move above ten per cent per annum against the present range of six to eight per cent in terms of Rs 4000 crore annually, Mr Ravidas said.

He appealed to the financial sector to invest in amusement parks as the industry needed investment of around Rs 3,000 crore for the next few years.

IAAPI's senior managing committee member S K Bhatia pointed out that all the developed countries, including the United States, provide free land and subsidized interest rate on capital. Hence, Indian Government should reduce entertainment tax and provide industry status to the amusement industry and make it an integral part of tourism and development in the country.

He said factors like monsoon, cold weather, examinations, marriage season and cricket affected the industry. The response received during these occasions is very low in parks across the country. Hence, out of 365 days in a year, only 100 days are the peak periods for the parks.

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