Maldives publicizes new airport fee regulation

Government Tuesday publicized the required regulation as it looks to introduce a new airport fee that would see every departing foreign passenger from the country's main airport pay an Airport Development Fee (ADF) of USD25.

The 'Bill on Taxation and Levying of Fees for Passengers Departing from International Airports in Maldives' was signed into law by president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom last month.

Despite including locals for the ADC, the parliament compromised to slash the fee to USD12 from every departing local passenger.

The new fee would add to the current airport service charge -- USD25 from foreign passengers and USD12 from locals.

Under the new law, every airline operating in the Maldives must pay the fee to Maldives Inland Revenue Authority (MIRA) under the regulation.

according to the regulation, permitted airport operators and airlines operating in the Maldives must register with MIRA before the law comes into effect.

The new fee would come into effect for airline tickets purchased after February 1 to travel after May 1 this year.

Persons exempted from the new fee are passengers with diplomatic immunity, direct transit passengers and those under the age of two years.

Government had said the ADF– an estimated MVR565.8 million next year – will be used to set up a “sovereign development fund” as a long-term fiscal reserve to repay debt.