Gov should see sector as 'key driver' in economic growth

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Significant role: hospitality should be recognised as key driver in economic growth
Significant role: hospitality should be recognised as key driver in economic growth

Related tags Legislation Government Finance

The Government should remember established industries like hospitality are “key drivers” and play a “significant role” in economic growth, according to trade bodies from across the sector.

This comes as Friday 27 January saw Chancellor Jeremy Hunt​ set out his vision for long-term prosperity across the UK, though UKHospitality (UKH) chief executive Kate Nicholls stated the Chancellor was “clearly focused on digital technology, green industries and life sciences” and should recognise hospitality as a "key driver of economic growth”.

She said: “Just recently, hospitality was credited for the unexpected growth​ we saw in November, bucking the long-term trend, and with the right support and investment it can deliver those results consistently.”

In his address, Hunt said the UK had grown at around the same rate as Germany since the Brexit referendum, but that the nation had not yet returned to pre-pandemic employment or output levels and needed to “improve productivity”.

Additionally, the Chancellor echoed the Prime Minister​ on the importance of reducing inflation and growing the economy, stating the “best tax cut right now is a cut inflation”.

Plans for growth 

Nicholls added: “[Hospitality] can drive the economy forward and help put the brakes on inflation.

“Staffing is critical to that and the Chancellor was right to mention the need to get the economically inactive back into work.

“Hospitality has thousands of jobs available and a fantastic track record of creating careers, whether that’s an apprenticeship, a career change, or an opportunity to get back into work later in life.

“There will always be new and emerging areas of the economy but the Government would do well to recognise established sectors, like hospitality, are the ones that will pull the nation forward.

“We have the determination to overcome challenges, the innovation to embrace new trends and the capacity to offer jobs to so many. I hope it recognises that when delivering its plan for growth.”

Grasp the opportunity 

The Chancellor also stated the Government’s “ambition should be to have nothing less than the most competitive tax regime of any major country” and urged the country was in “critical” need of “easier access to capital, particularly scale ups”.

Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association said: “The Chancellor is right to focus on growing the economy as we hopefully emerge from a painful inflationary cycle.

“Brewing and pubs can play a significant role in that, providing a range of high-skilled, flexible, and varied roles right across the economy.

“Unlike many others – ours is a sector that is present in every community in the country and the Government has the chance to grasp the opportunity we present them by reducing the burden of tax​ in the upcoming budget​, allowing us to invest in people and places.”


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