Inquiry set to hear concerns over Govt support for inbound industry

By Steve Jones
12/11/2021
Home » Inquiry set to hear concerns over Govt support for inbound industry

The dismal response to the inbound industry’s plight during COVID is set to be thrust into the spotlight after an inquiry was launched into how Britain is promoted overseas.

It will be led by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sports Committee (DCMS) with government support for the sector among the issues on the table.

It will also examine whether the UK can capitalise on its exit from the EU and what the biggest threats are to its status as a ‘soft power superpower’.

Launching the inquiry, DCMS Committee chair Julian Knight said: “We know that tourism has taken a major hit as a result of the pandemic with the number of people visiting the UK down dramatically and their spending this year expected to be a fraction of what it was.

“With our rich cultural history and heritage, we have a unique appeal to international tourists. We’ll be looking at how we promote Britain abroad to re-establish our position as a prime holiday destination and help repair the damage done to the tourist industry.

“We’ll also be considering the challenges ahead and whether enough is being done by Government to support this sector’s vital recovery.”

UKInbound, which has long-argued for tailored support for the industry, welcomed the inquiry.

Chief Executive Josh Croft said: “Since the beginning of the pandemic we have consistently presented Government with clear evidence of the crippling effects of Covid-19 on the UK’s fifth largest export industry, inbound tourism.

“We have outlined the desperate need for tailored support and presented grant proposals, all which clearly outlined how inbound tourism can accelerate the UK’s economic recovery. 

“The inbound tourism industry is looking to 2022 with a sense of optimism, but Brand Britain and portraying internationally that the UK is open for business, welcoming and a safe place to visit has never been more important.”

The inquiry will examine what measures are needed to re-establish the UK as a holiday destination for international travellers, what the government and tourist boards be doing to support the industry and what the impact will be if the recovery is slow.

The DCMS is inviting submissions which should be made by 6 January.

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