Sector welcomes Gov reshuffle

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

New focus: sector welcomes Gov reshuffle (Credit: Getty/Robert Ingelhart)
New focus: sector welcomes Gov reshuffle (Credit: Getty/Robert Ingelhart)

Related tags Legislation Government ukhospitality

The hospitality sector has welcomed the creation of a new Government department to focus on energy security.

Former Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), Grant Shapps, was appointed as Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero on Tuesday (7 February).

The new department will focus on the energy portfolio from the previous BEIS office with a view to ensure the security and delivery of energy supply in a properly functioning market, reducing energy bills and coordinating net zero objectives.

UKHospitality (UKH) chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “Given the seismic impact rising energy costs have had, and continue to have, on hospitality, the creation of a new department to focus on energy security is good news.”

New focus 

This follows recent news a third of businesses have cut trading days as a result of the spiralling energy bills, according to UKH.

Nicholls continued: “The importance of energy to business operations cannot be overstated, especially at a time when so many other inflationary pressures are in play, so this separation within Government must not lead to any disconnect in policymaking and engagement.

“In fact, working together will also be essential for hospitality businesses to deliver economic growth and achieve its net zero ambitions.”

In addition to the streamlining of BEIS, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced new appointments across several Government departments, including Kemi Badenoch as Secretary of State for Business and Trade and Lucy Frazer as Secretary of State for Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS).

Nicholls added: “Hopefully, the restructuring of DCMS priorities will herald a new focus on the role tourism plays in the UK, contributing £75 billion to the economy, and as a key export trade.

Renewed opportunity 

“The department’s Tourism Recovery Plan is essential for the sector and I look forward to working together on its delivery.”

Furthermore, Night-Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester Sacha Lord said he “welcomed” Frazer’s appointment and urged the MP to work with Chancellor Jeremy Hunt ahead of the Spring Budget to deliver “renewed opportunity and hope” to the sector.  

He added: "I urge the Secretary to call on the Chancellor to rethink business energy support, which will fall away substantially from next month leading to the inevitable closure of swathes of cultural and leisure venues across the UK.

“The sector has experienced the toughest years in its history and with this move I hope the support it is given starts to reflect its importance to economic growth.”

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