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|Hotels' threat to shut down|
Article Date: December 25, 2008
Promoted by a
government decision to raise electricity tariffs paid by tourist
facilities in the country by 78%, tens of hotel owners in the capital
Sana'a and other provinces are threatening to close their hotels within
a week if the government refused to repeal the decision.
In a sit-in in front of the cabinet presidency on Tuesday in protest against what they describe as the unfair decision, the hotel owners demanded rescinding the decision as it will, as they say, lead to the increase in tourist programs fees which in turn will convince tourists stop arriving in Yemen.
They said the sit-in comes after failed attempts to convince authorities to revoke the decision which was made without justifications.
They say such decision affects tourism in Yemen, instead of promoting it through eliminating all impediments facing it.
They argued that the decision raising electricity tariffs by tourist facilities as much as double the previous duties and this bedsides illegal fees such institutions pay comes in time the labor market facing severe shocks as oil prices slumped to $ 30.
The measure is among other measures taken by the government that definitely affects national economy, they say.
It will weaken investment in the hotel area; consequently lead to cuts in jobs at hotels and force hotel owners to buy electricity generators which affect environment, the said.
They urged the government to implement the president's orders calling for setting electricity tariffs as YR 17 for the one kilowatt.The Hotel Assembly in Sana'a along with representatives from hotels in Aden, Taiz, Ibb, Hadramout and Hajjah threatened to stage further sit-ins in an effort to make the government change the decision.