Return to Top

Skip to main content

Press Releases
Japan Tourism Agency > News/Press Conferences > Press Release > 【Tax System Revisions in FY2017】 Establishment of a System for Exempting Foreign Visitors from Liquor Taxes
main content

【Tax System Revisions in FY2017】 Establishment of a System for Exempting Foreign Visitors from Liquor Taxes

print_page_alt

Last Update : 2016/12/8

 Tax system revisions in FY2017 include the establishment of a system for exempting foreign visitors from taxes on alcoholic beverages bought at sake breweries, wineries and makers of other liquors. (Tax system revisions outlined by ruling parties on December 8, 2016)
 The Japan Tourism Agency is cooperating with relevant ministries and agencies in promoting "sakagura tourism" in rural areas and in increasing the number of foreign visitors to sakagura sites and their spending at these places.
Tours of sake breweries, wineries or makers of other liquors for tastings of local alcoholic beverages, rural walks, and the enjoyment of local cuisine and traditional culture.

1 Details of the tax system revisions

 A system will be introduced for exempting foreign visitors from liquor taxes in addition to consumption taxes when they purchase alcoholic beverages at breweries, wineries or makers of other liquors that are licensed to operate as tax-free shops.
 
・Eligible purchasers: Foreign visitors to Japan
・Places: Sakagura (breweries, wineries and makers of other liquors) that are licensed to operate as tax-free shops where foreign visitors are exempted from consumption taxes.
・Commodities: Liquors (all kinds of alcoholic beverages produced in Japan)

⇒ The liquor tax exemption aims at promoting sakagura tourism and attracting larger shares of the increasing numbers of foreign tourists to rural areas by making Japanese alcoholic beverages more affordable to foreign visitors.

 There were 3,096 sakagura sites throughout Japan as of March 31, 2015. Consumption of Japanese alcoholic beverages is expected to increase when more sakagura are licensed to operate as tax-free shops2 and when the needs of foreign visitors for Japanese alcoholic beverages are better served.
2The number of sakagura sites that were licensed to operate as tax-free shops is 45 (as of April 1, 2016).

(Reference information)
For 1.8 liters of refined sake with an alcohol content of 15% and a pretax price of 2,000 yen, the total tax is 364 yen (i.e., 216 yen in liquor tax + 148 yen in consumption tax).
The tax rate (liquor and consumption taxes as a share of the sake purchase price) is about 18%.

2 Liquor tax exemption system enforcement date

October 1, 2017 (provisional)
 
The Japan Tourism Agency is cooperating with relevant ministries and agencies to publicize the liquor tax exemption system and promote the use of the system.

Note: Please refer to the "Outline of the MLIT's Requests for Tax System Revisions" on the MLIT website for information about JTA requests for revisions to tax systems other than the liquor tax exemption system.