The UK’s first ever tourism sector deal was announced today and mean an extra 130,000 new hotel rooms for the UK by 2025, with 75% of those outside of London.
There will also be a new government strategy to grow the number of business events, as well as £250,000 to improve broadband connectivity in conferences centres across the UK.
Prime Minister Theresa May said: "As one of the most visited countries in the world, it is crucial that we remain globally competitive to meet growing demands.
"That is why I am pleased to announce the UK’s first ever tourism sector deal, ensuring that we continue to innovate, boost connectivity and economic productivity, expand career pathways and breakdown barriers for visitors with disabilities.
The new deal will revolutionise the way data is used by the sector, through the creation of new Tourism Data Hub. The hub will collate regularly updated data showing the latest trends and spends, allowing businesses to better target overseas visitors.
The deal will also support the creation of an additional 10,000 apprenticeships for people building their careers in the tourism and hospitality sectors.
The deal also outlines the government’s ambitions for the UK to become the most accessible destination for disabled visitors, through the improvement of disabled facilities and access to destinations across the country.
Michael Hirst OBE, chair of the Events Industry Board (EIB) and Business Visits and Events Partnership (BVEP) said: "The EIB and the BVEP welcome the announcement of a Tourism Sector Deal.
"We are delighted that business events future so prominently in the deal with the supplementary publication of an International Business Events Action Plan. This is a very positive endorsement of the importance of the sector to showcase the UK key economic sectors, grow trade, exports and inward investment.
"The UK has always been a world-class destination for business events. Now there’s a greater opportunity to attract and grow more international events throughout Britain."
Travel trade association UKinbound has welcomed the news. Its chair James Aitken said: "We are really pleased that a sector deal has been secured with the Government and congratulate all those involved who have helped to drive this work forward.
"For the first time, we will have a national strategy that will help bring the sector together and collaborate on activities and initiatives.
"This will ultimately help visitors get to destinations quickly and easily, have a better experience in those destinations, improve productivity and efficiency and raise awareness about the fantastic employment opportunities the industry provides."
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