January 12, 2020 / 4:13 PM / 13 days ago

Uruguay says Argentina will review 30% 'tourism tax': media

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Argentina’s Tourism Minister has committed to reviewing a 30% “tourism tax” applied when travelers from the country pay for goods and services abroad in U.S. dollars, Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez told local news portal Infobae.

The new law, which has hit traditional Argentine Southern hemisphere summer holiday destinations like its smaller neighbor Uruguay, applies to all such expenses incurred when using credit cards outside of the country.

Vazquez said in an interview published by Infobae late on Saturday that representatives of the Uruguayan Chamber of Tourism traveled to Argentina to talk with representatives of the Fernandez government.

“They got what they hoped to get: a commitment to some potential flexibility in the timing of the measure ...and a commitment from the minister of tourism (Matías Lammens) to review the situation in 180 days. We will see what happens,” Vázquez told Infobae.

A spokesman for the Argentine Ministry of Tourism declined to comment.

Argentina is in the grip of a prolonged recession and annual inflation is running at more than 50%.

The credit card charge aims to help prop up the local peso and was introduced by the new government of Alberto Fernández as part of an “economic emergency” law passed by Congress in December.

The government is due to repay around $100 billion in maturing debt this year and is in negotiations with creditors about a restructuring.

Reporting by Maximillian Heath, writing by Aislinn Laing; Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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