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Macau top court denies Galaxy’s tax exemption claim

Macau’s Court of Final Appeal has ruled the tourism tax paid by Galaxy Entertainment Group in relation to ‘complementary services’ provided in its StarWorld Hotel is in accordance with the law, local media reports.

The gaming operator filed an appeal to Macau’s top court after its previous appeal was denied by the Court of Second Instance last year in November.

In 2014, Galaxy Entertainment Group paid the MOP2.57 million (US$320,488) in tourism taxes for ‘complementary services’ at its StarWorld Hotel. However, as Galaxy was not the direct provider of these services, the operator claimed it should be ‘tax free’, and had appealed the ruling. 

According to the Court of Final Appeal last week, “any services provided by hotel operators in certain activity ranges should be taxed, which includes accommodation, food & beverages, as well as other auxiliary services with only telecommunications and laundry exempted”.

“[All the complementary services] are actually provided by the hotel to guests, as such they are covered by the scope of tourism tax,” the judges of the final court wrote.

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