As part of the Honduras2020 program, several public and private sector institutions accompanied President Juan Orlando Hernández to approve the new Tourism Promotion Law.
The law was submitted by the National Congress and aims to drive investment and employment in the tourism sector of Honduras, according to a written release.
The country lacked the right conditions to attract investment in the sector, according to the report. Despite being one of the Central American countries with the most varied tourism offer with an enormous wealth of natural resources, its level of growth in this sector is barely 0.5 percent, comparing to the rest of the region, whose average annual growth reaches levels up to 7 percent.
Several institutions joined forces to develop the new legal framework for the promotion of tourism, including the private public partnership Honduras2020, the Honduran Tourism Institute (IHT), the Honduras National Tourism Chamber (Canaturh), the Honduran Business Council (Cohep) and the Honduran Business Association of Small Hotels.
This law includes a package of incentives for local and international investment and at the same time aims to ensure fiscal benefits over time. It will also serve as an important instrument to generate new sustainable jobs through the investment expected over the next few years.
The tourism law includes equal treatment to motivate small, medium and large Honduran and foreign entrepreneurs to invest in the tourism sector of Honduras; a new legal framework for existing companies that make additional new investments for more than 35 percent of their initial investment; and fiscal stability agreements.
Other characteristics include incentives for the investment of natural or legal persons; a fund to support land and air transportation companies in tourism; the possibility of setting up investment trust funds; and special provisions on municipal permits and taxes.
This law is part of a larger strategy that will make the tourism sector a pillar of real growth to improve the quality of life of thousands of Hondurans. That plan includes customer service training programs for the workforce and the necessary hotel, entertainment and urban infrastructure to compete as a world class tourist destination.