Cruisers could soon be forced to pay a ‘green tax’

Font Size:

Cruisers could soon be paying an extra tax on their cruise fare, if the Federal Government’s Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources has its way.

The ‘green tax’ is designed to fund environmental measures, but industry lobby group Cruise Lines International Australia (CLIA) is concerned that this new biosecurity import levy will drive up costs for both operators and passengers.

As of 1 July 2019, the levy will originally target freight vessels. However, CLIA has been informed that it could be extended to the cruise industry in January.

A statement from the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources given to Cruise Passenger today confirms that cruise ships are under consideration.

“The potential expansion of the levy to commercial vessels is one possible change the department has explored with industry to address stakeholder feedback,” reads the statement.

While a definite cost is yet to be decided, it could be determined on charges per visit and/or by gross tonnage.

cruise ship sydney harbour

According to Cruise Passenger, the levy is currently set at $10.02 per incoming twenty-foot equivalent sea container and $1 per tonne for non-containerised cargo.

So, a ship like Ovation of the Seas which weighs 168,666 tonnes could attract a levy of $168,666 at $1 a tonne. Divide that by the total number of passengers the ship can hold at capacity (4905), and it would work out to around $34.38 per passenger.

CLIA Australasia and Asia managing director Joel Katz is concerned about how the levy will affect the cruise industry, which operates with frequent port calls and often with larger vessels than other forms of shipping.

“Extending this new tax to the cruise industry has come as a complete surprise and without proper consultation,” said Mr Katz.

“There is no justification for hitting cruise lines with charges originally designed for freight.”

But, apart from the $325m the levy is expected to raise by 2020, the Government has its reasons.

“Hitchhiking pests are a significant and costly threat to Australia, and they can be found in or on the surface of vessels, not just in imported products,” said a Ministry spokesperson.

CLIA says passengers are already paying extras fees for cruising.

“Travellers are already taxed heavily through measures like the $60 Passenger Movement Charge, which is already used to fund passenger-related biosecurity activities,” said Mr Katz.

“Australia’s Passenger Movement Charge is one of the most expensive passenger taxes in the world.”

CLIA and other organisations are calling on the government to remove the ‘significantly flawed’ levy from the 2019 budget.

Do you think this levy is unfair?

Join YourLifeChoices today
and get this free eBook!

Join
By joining YourLifeChoices you consent that you have read and agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy

RELATED LINKS

Cruise fares: what are you paying for?

What exactly is included, and not included in your cruise fare?

Are passengers expected to tip cruise ship workers?

Dolores wonders if she should budget for tips when she goes on a cruise.

Seven tips to help you take control of your cruise experience

Seven tips from seasoned sailors will ensure that you ‘own' your next cruise experience.

Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?

Contact:
LinkedIn
Email

7 Comments

Total Comments: 7
  1. 0
    0

    Lets not kid ourselves. An increase of $34 for a cruise is 7 cups of coffee and will not deter anybody from cruising. What concerns me more is that the money raised will not do one thing to improve the quality of rivers as the water is already sold to cotton and rice growers and this will likely not change. The extra money will just get added to consolidated revenue and be wasted like so much of the taxes collected.
    Australia has reached the point of being close to the highest taxed country on the planet, the exception being the top end of town with tax cuts, fraudulent but allowable offshore tax shelters and a range of reductions available to them to drive down their taxable incomes. As always average people are fair game and this tax is aimed at them.

    • 0
      0

      If it moves, tax it! That seems to be the mantra these days. Most probably the excuse from our Govt will be the same as when the tax on a new passport was increased by $20 recently.
      Assist. Treasurer: If you can afford to leave for overseas you can afford an extra $20. I’ll take it the Govt. Ministers get theirs for zilch.

  2. 0
    0

    Love the idea that “hitchhiking pests” are on the surface and in every vessel. (Ministry sources).
    What about the hundreds of planes and thousands of non immunised people who arrive in this country everyday. Are they not a bio-security risk?
    This is just a money grabbing exercise by a taxation led Government. The extra collections will be used to line the crooked politicians’ pockets.

  3. 0
    0

    Talk about getting things stuffed up. The $1.00 per tonnes is for cargo that is NOT containerised, Not the vessels displacement. Maybe the author should learn English and actually proof read their articles before submitting. Oh yeah, what happened to ty[he editor?

  4. 0
    0

    As soon as we can afford to enjoy ourselves, they tax it.

  5. 0
    0

    I must agree with you Mick.Australian goverment is obsessed with collecting tax.

  6. 0
    0

    Bloody hell … yet another way to rip off Australians. Our greedy Govt has seen another way to build up its coffers. Cruising has become popular with Australians because it’s a more affordable all-inclusive (almost) holiday without breaking the bank. Not for much longer, this is just the tip of the iceberg 🙁


FACEBOOK COMMENTS



SPONSORED LINKS

continue reading

Health

Mozzies biting? Here's how to choose a repellent - and how to use it

Mozzies biting? Here's how to choose a repellent (and how to use it for the best protection) Shutterstock Cameron Webb,...

Entertainment

Sir Bob Geldof on grief, fame and getting through it all

I've hardly started questioning Sir Bob Geldof before he is off on a long, sweary rant about everything he thinks...

Australia

Abandon Australia Day and choose the history we want to celebrate?

Australia Day is the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet in Australia. On 26 January 1788, 11 convict...

Community

Speaking up for the disappearing art of listening

Columnist Peter Leith is 91 and describes himself as "half-deaf and half-blind". But he sees and hears a lot and...

Beauty

Hyperpigmentation: How to tackle those tricky dark patches on your ski

There are plenty of great things about summer - sunshine, picnics and fruity cocktails immediately spring to mind - but...

Australia

Enthralling, dystopian, sublime: NGV Triennial has a huge 'wow' factor

Refik Anadol: Quantum memories 2020 (render) custom software, quantum computing, generative algorithm with artificial intelligence (AI), real time digital animation...

Australia

Where to eat, drink and play on Kangaroo Island

Australia's third largest island is an oasis of pristine wilderness, premium produce and hidden secrets ripe for discovery. Easily accessible...

COVID-19

Will you need a vaccination to visit Australian venues?

State premiers have suggested that once vaccinations begin in Australia, those without vaccinations may be banned from visiting some venues...

LOADING MORE ARTICLE...