To accommodate amendments to tourist laws and regulations, the Ministry of Transportation supplemented and amended the Penal Standards for the Statute for the Development of Tourism (Taiwan)

Oli Wong

The Ministry of Transportation amended and promulgated the Penal Standards for the Statute for the Development of Tourism (hereinafter, the “Standards”) via the MOTC-JIAO-Lu-(1)-10682004255 Directive of July 13, 2017. Therefore, relevant tourist laws and regulations were amended accordingly with corresponding amendments to Article 8 and Schedules I through VII of each article of the Standards. The amendments are highlighted below:
Firstly, with respect to tourist hotel operators, Schedule I of Article 5 of the Standards was revised. The standards and amounts of penalties for an operator who operates business without obtaining a license for the tourist hotel business first, who operates business without obtaining an approval for using “tourist hotel” in its name, who operates business without applying for and passing inspection and obtaining a business license were revised. The penalty for “expanding the operated guest rooms without authorization” under Article 55, Paragraph 7 of the Statute for the Development of Tourism was also synchronized by adding the patterns of violations concerning unauthorized expansion of business premises, failure to rectify within the required period, or casualties to guests so caused.
Secondly, with respect to hotel business, when the competent authority investigates illegal hotels (including daily rental property), when the property cannot be accessed to confirm the number of guests because the user or owner refuses to cooperate with the inspection, if the registration certificate is not obtained with clear relevant evidence that shows the operation of hotel business, it shall be presumed that at least one guest room is operated, a fine of NT$100,000 to NT$500,000 shall be imposed, and the operator shall be ordered to close down the business.
Thirdly, with respect to travel business, Schedule 3 of Article 7 of the Standards was revised by increasing the fine for failure to use lawful transportation vehicles and qualified drivers provided by a legal operator from NT$300,000 to NT$500,000.
Fourthly, in the event of possession of firearms, dangerous articles or other contrabands, use of drugs or other narcotics, racketing, gambling or other acts that undermine public serenity, public order and good social morals, failure to follow admonitions, forceful stay by a guest who fails to carry identification papers or refuses to register, likelihood of public hazards or other suspected criminal offenses in violation of Article 29 of the Administrative Rules for Hostels, when a hostel operator fails to actively report to a police station, if the violation is lighter (such as gambling or late night racketing), a fine of NT$10,000 will be imposed. For more severe offenses (such as likelihood of public hazards such as possession of firearms or use of drugs or other suspected offenses), a fine of NT$30,000 will be imposed.
Finally, for an operator who operates business without a business license for tourist hotel business, a registration certificate for hotel business, a travel business license, a business license for tourism, and/or a hostel registration certificate, if operation information is distributed, broadcast or inserted in advertisements or other media, a fine is added along with basic penal provisions concerning violators who continue to insert such advertisements.