14 May 2009

Reports of 15 years tax free for new owner of Tusitala Hotel in Samoa

7:52 pm on 14 May 2009

The Samoa Government is reported to have given the new owner of the Kitano Tusitala hotel, Fiji's YP Reddy group, 15 years tax free status, as part of its incentives, ahead of the company taking over next month.

A senior government source says the YP Reddy group has also been given an incentive of free import duty for a number of years but the Cabinet has rejected a request from the hotel operator for the cost of the land lease to be further cut back.

The deal has angered several ministers, according to a government source, and has reportedly sparked a letter from the Prime Minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, warning Ministers to take more care in making deals with foreign investors.

The Prime Minister has warned negotiations could result in local people receiving few benefits and he advised ministers to reject any overseas trips or invitations to expensive restaurants during the negotiations.