REPUBLIC ACT NO. 1478
AN ACT TO CREATE A BOARD OF TRAVEL AND TOURIST INDUSTRY, DEFINING ITS POWERS, DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.
Section 1. There is hereby created a Board of Travel and Tourist Industry to regulate international travel and tourism with a view to the development of a prosperous Philippine tourist industry. The Board shall be composed of the Secretary of Commerce as Chairman and the under secretaries of Foreign Affairs, Finance, Justice and Public Works and Communications, the President of the Philippines Chamber of Commerce and the President of the Philippine Tourist and Travel Association, as members.
Section 2. The Board shall have the following responsibilities and duties:
(a) It shall coordinate the activities of all agencies of the government which concern international travel and tourism;
(b) It shall promote the removal of unnecessary barriers to travel and the integration and simplification of travel regulations and requirements as well as their efficient, fair and courteous enforcement to assure expeditious, pleasant and hospitable reception of all tourists and visitors and utmost satisfaction on their part during their stay in the country and upon their departure;
(c) It shall undertake the development of tourist attractions and provide and maintain essential facilities for tourists and travelers where private enterprise is not prepared to take care of them;
(d) It shall organize and support a program of promotion and publicity calculated to interest, attract and induce people abroad to visit the Philippines and patronize things Philippine and to enhance the prestige of the Filipino people and the Republic;
(e) It shall regulate and license the business of travel agents; and
(f) It shall exercise supervision over the operation of all facilities and services that cater to or have anything to do with foreign travelers and tourists with a view to insuring the maintenance of the highest possible standards, reasonable charges, courtesy, honesty and efficiency.
Section 3. To carry out the aims and purposes of this Act, a tax shall be collected on all fares of passengers leaving the country as well as fares for those returning or coming in, if payable here, at the following rates:
(a) If said passage costs not more than sixty pesos, seven pesos and fifty centavos.
(b) If said passage costs not more than sixty pesos and not more than one hundred twenty pesos, twelve pesos.
(c) If said passage costs more than one hundred twenty pesos and not more than two hundred and fifty pesos, fifteen pesos.
(d) If said passage costs more than two hundred and fifty pesos and not more than five hundred pesos, thirty pesos.
(e) If said passage costs more than five hundred pesos, and not more than one thousand pesos, fifty pesos.
(f) If said passage costs more than one thousand pesos, one hundred pesos.
Section two hundred and twenty-eight of Commonwealth Act Numbered Four hundred and sixty-six, as amended, is repealed.
Section 4. This tax shall be collected from the passengers by the carriers and travel agencies issuing foreign travel passenger tickets and they, in turn, shall remit their collections within the first ten days of every succeeding quarter to the Board of Travel and Tourist Industry.
Section 5. An amount not in excess of 50 per cent of such collections and all those which may be effected under section six shall accrue to the funds of the Board to be spent under its authority exclusively for the development of tourist facilities and the promotion of tourism both within the country and abroad, through all well-known media but especially through foreign publicity and advertising. The other fifty per cent shall accrue to the general funds of the Government and shall be accounted for and delivered by the Board of Travel and Tourist Industry to the Treasurer of the Philippines.
Section 6. The Board shall regulate travel agency business, prescribing the necessary rules to be govern their establishment and operation. It shall fix and collect an annual license fee from every individual or group engaged in the travel agency business in an amount not in excess of one hundred pesos a year. No individual or firm shall engage in the travel agency business without being licensed by the Board of Travel and Tourist Industry.
Section 7. In the exercise of its supervisory powers over facilities and services catering to or having anything to do with foreign travelers and tourists, the Board shall prescribe rules and regulations for their operation and maintenance. In case of non-compliance with such rules and regulations, it shall take the necessary steps to cancel or recommend the cancellation of the permits of the offending parties or their prosecution, if warranted.
Section 8. For the purpose of strengthening the competitive position of the Philippines in the field of international tourism, the President of the Philippines, upon recommendation of the Board, may:
(a) Suspend the payment of visa and visa application fees for foreign tourists and travelers coming to the Philippines;
(b) Exempt foreign tourists and travelers from payment of taxes on food, drinks, cigars and cigarettes consumed by them, as well as amusement taxes during their stay in the country;
(c) Allow foreign visitors and travelers leaving the country to carry with them or have mailed or shipped for them within sixty days of their departure, free of export licenses, taxes or fees, any quantity of locally purchased Philippine souvenir or gift goods when the value thereof shall not exceed one thousand pesos;
(d) Transfer to the Board the control and supervision of any such facilities, services, rights and properties, real or personal, as may now be owned, operated or maintained by other government agencies or instrumentalities which may be helpful in the effective promotion and development of the tourist industry.
Section 9. The Philippine Tourist and Travel Association, Inc., which under its charter, Republic Act Numbered Seven hundred and ten is the exclusive agency of the government in the promotion of the tourist industry, shall be the instrumentality of the Board in carrying out the objectives of this Act.
Section 10. The Board shall pass upon the requirements of the said Association and make available out of its revenues as provided for in sections five and six above such sums may be necessary for carrying out its program of activities.
Section 11. The Board of Travel and Tourist Industry shall, five days before the opening of the regular sessions of Congress, submit to Congress a verified detailed report of its collections, disbursements, and activities including those of the Philippine Tourist and Travel Association, Inc. and of its accomplishments and a copy of the plantilla as of December thirty-first of the year immediately preceding.
Section 12. All provisions of law contrary to the provisions of this Act or are inconsistent with its aims and objectives are hereby repealed.
Section 13. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
Approved: June 15, 1956