Argentina’s travel companies questioned this Thursday (13) the decision of the government of Alberto Fernández to create a higher exchange rate for travel abroad and warned that the The so-called “Qatar dollar” will negatively impact the sector.
In a statement, the Argentine Forum of Travel Consultants and Companies (Facve) expressed its “concern” with the measure published this Thursday in the Official Gazette and through which new fees are imposed on purchases of airline tickets in dollars and other expenses in that currency with credit and debit cards.
The creation of this exchange rate seeks to discourage the departure of foreign exchange to look after the Argentine Central Bank’s meager monetary reserves.
“Tourism is not responsible for the Central Bank’s lack of dollars and these new short-term measures do nothing but hinder activity at the same time. generate more taxes and distort perceptions, once again hitting a sector that has yet to recovered from the serious effects of the pandemic”, lamented Facve.
The companies highlighted that as of this Thursday, international air tickets issued in Argentina will be reached with 107 % of taxes and withholdings on the base fare of the ticket.
“Both airlines and travel agencies are agents of perception and collection of these taxes. In this way, we add even more tax burden: we pay taxes on the taxes we collect for the State”, said Carlos Núñez, executive director of Facve.
The businessmen also recalled that the sector’s trade balance tourism works with Argentines leaving their country and foreigners entering Argentina and warned that the addition of taxes “attacks” against the recovery of the offer of international flights.
“In case of progress in this In this direction, Argentina will continue to lose connectivity with the world, seriously limiting the inflow of foreign exchange into the country by foreign tourism,” the statement warned.
On the other hand, the companies assured that 75% of foreign exchange outflows attributed to tourism in Central Bank accounts correspond, in fact, to consumption in foreign currency made through online purchases, while “tourism itself, tickets, stays and others, is only a fourth part”.
The new exchange rates of Officialized in the Official Gazette apply to tourist expenditure abroad that exceeds US$ 300 per month, known as the “Qatar dollar” due to the higher expenditures expected for the World Cup; and the payment to international artists who perform in the country, which came to be called the “Coldplay dollar”.
Earlier, the Argentine government had denied that there was any “uncertainty” or “concern ” by businessmen after the creation of new types of exchange.
In a press conference, presidential spokeswoman Gabriela Cerruti assured that these measures are “well received” by the interested sectors, “which in many cases ask for them” in their conversations with the government.
“What the government is doing is ensuring that the dollars that the state has are used for production and job creation, as well as for science, health and knowledge. The measures being taken have to do with this and we understand that they are well received by all these sectors, which in many cases request them”, she argued.