To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the findings of the Office of National Statistics on Coronavirus and the impact on output in the UK economy: October 2020 that travel agent output is 89.9 percent less than in February 2020; and what plans he has to introduce specific support for the travel agency and tour operator sector.
13 January 2021
The Government recognises the travel sector has been particularly hard hit by COVID-19. We are regularly assessing the impact on tourism businesses and are continuing to engage across Government and with stakeholders - such as the Association of British Travel Agents and Association of Independent Tour Operators - to assess how we can most effectively support the recovery of travel and tourism across the UK.
On top of our wider economic support package, we have provided business rates relief and one-off grants for eligible hospitality and leisure businesses. We have also cut VAT for tourism and hospitality activities from 20% to 5% until the end of March, and we have confirmed that the Government will protect refund credit notes if ATOL-protected packages are cancelled as a result of COVID-19.