In June 2019 the Government announced a Tourism Sector Deal. This is a game-changer for tourism, spelling a step-change in how we underpin the success of tourism for a generation, moving it to the top table as a leading industry for the UK Government’s future economic planning.
This deal is testament to what can be achieved by working in partnership and we would like to thank all of you who have been involved. It represents more than two years of hard work, commitment and determination from the tourism industry which came together with one voice, getting behind the bid to build consensus on ideas for the future and offering commitments that align with the five key pillars of the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy.
Highlights of the deal are:
‘Ideas’; industry and the BTA will work together to create a new independent Tourism Data Hub which will help the sector to better understand visitor preferences in real time.
‘People’: Industry will create an additional 10,000 apprenticeship ‘starts’ a year by 2025; a £1 million recruitment and retention programme; and increasing in-work training, mentorships and development of new T-Levels.
‘Infrastructure’ – Industry will continue to invest in accommodation - developing an additional 130,000 bedrooms by 2025 - and attractions and innovative products. Government will make travel to and around the UK easier for tourists with the development of its Maritime and Aviation strategies as well as a number of policy developments.
Joint working to ensure support for the Government’s ambition to make the UK the most accessible tourism destination in Europe by 2025 and increase the number of international disabled visitors by a third.
‘Places’ - piloting up to five new Tourism Zones, supported by central government and a biddable funding process, to drive visitor numbers across the country, extend the season and to tackle local barriers to tourism growth.
‘Business environment’ – launching a Business Events Action Plan 2019-25 to make the UK the leading destination for business events in Europe.
BTA has agreed to continue to project manage the deal and will be hosting a conference to kick off an industry engagement programme in September 2019.
The British Tourist Authority is the national tourist agency, responsible for marketing Britain worldwide and developing Britain’s visitor economy. However, tourism is a devolved competence, as such, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales each have their own national board responsible for attracting visitors. The UK government, where appropriate, will continue to consult the devolved governments on future work and join up on projects the devolved governments would like to partner in.
There are also a number of policies outlined in this document where the competence is not devolved, most notably visas and immigration. The Skills and Hospitality Board established by the industry proposes working with all four nations on the skills agenda.