¥1,000 departure tax becomes law, set to start Jan. 2019

Jiji PressTOKYO (Jiji Press) — The Diet enacted on Wednesday a bill to introduce a departure tax of ¥1,000.

The bill became law as the House of Councillors approved it by a majority vote of ruling coalition members and other lawmakers at a plenary session.

From January 2019, the tax will be collected each time a person, regardless of nationality, leaves the country. Specifically, the levy will be added to airfares and ship fares.

Revenue from the tax, estimated to amount to around ¥43 billion per fiscal year, will be used for measures to promote tourism to Japan, including improving multilingual guide services at national parks and cultural assets.

Prior to the enactment of the departure tax, the Diet passed on Tuesday an amendment bill to the international tourism promotion law stipulating that the tax revenue should specifically be used to create a pleasant travel environment, enhance efforts to disseminate the country’s attractiveness and develop regional tourism resources.

The Japanese government aims to increase the number of foreign visitors to 40 million in 2020, from some 28.69 million in 2017.Speech

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