New Delhi, Sep 23 : Referring to recent cuts in the corporate and the goods and services taxes, the Union Tourism and Culture Minister Prahlad Singh Patel said here on Monday it was a Diwali gift for the tourism sector and would help boost the economy.
"The ministry had requested changes in the GST slab for the tourism sector.
The decision taken by the government is better than our expectations. This is a Diwali gift for the tourism industry," Patel said at the inauguration of the second edition of the India Tourism Mart.
The GST Council on Friday slashed tax on hotel tariffs and some goods to address sectoral concerns in a slowing economy.
The GST on room tariff between Rs 1,001 and Rs 7,500 per night has been reduced to 12 per cent from 18 per cent.
Similarly, tariff above Rs 7,500 will now attract 18 per cent GST against 28 per cent.
Over 240 representatives from 51 countries, including Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, the Philippines, Poland, the UK and the USA, are attending the event.
Tourism Mart Chairman Subhash Goyal said these types of events provided a platform for interaction and business opportunities.
"Tourism contributes substantially to the country's GDP, and going by the event's success last year, the response will be tremendous this time too," he said.
Last year's mart was also organised by the Tourism Ministry in partnership with FAITH with the support of states and Union Territories.