ABTA urges Chancellor to help travel industry in Budget

By Lisa James
20/10/2022
Home » ABTA urges Chancellor to help travel industry in Budget

ABTA has written to Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, ahead of the fiscal statement on 31 October, to demonstrate the value of the travel industry to the UK economy and highlight the help it needs to get through the cost-of-living crisis.

The letter says businesses in the travel sector are only just emerging from considerable trading restrictions that were in place for two years from March 2020, and many travel businesses have been unable to recover their financial positions to the same level as other areas of the UK economy.

ABTA urged the Chancellor to carefully examine the case of the travel industry within the review of Energy Bill Relief Scheme, which will decide upon future targeting of energy support.

Chief Executive Mark Tanzer said: “The new Chancellor must take the opportunity to use the full Budget statement later this month to establish a plan to help businesses continue to recover from the pandemic and facilitate their growth.

“The outbound travel sector is a major contributor to the UK economy, generating £49bn in GVA [gross value added] and supporting 720,000 jobs.

“Our latest research forecasts that outbound travel has the potential to grow 15% by 2027 but that is dependent on the right support and framework from Government.

“There are steps that Government can take help to support the sector, in recognition of the delayed recovery from the pandemic and current cost of living crisis, and we urge the Chancellor to use the Budget to take this action.

“Allowing businesses to flounder would be costly for the Government and sacrifices the growth potential for the industry and the economy.”

ABTA has asked the Chancellor to extend existing retail-based business rates support beyond April 2023 and open it up to travel businesses that are not based in retail premises.

The letter also wants ‘a sympathetic approach to businesses that are struggling to repay COVID debts’.

Finally, ABTA called on the Chancellor to freeze Air Passenger Duty.

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