Abta urges industry to engage with local MPs after general election called

Abta is urging the industry to engage with their local MPs to ensure the voice of the industry is heard, after the prime minister called a general election.

Rishi Sunak shared a statement outside Downing Street today (May 22) announcing that a general election will take place on July 4.

Abta is now encouraging members of the trade to meet with their local candidates before voters go to the polls to stress the value of the sector.

More: Abta unveils manifesto as general election approaches

Abta chief executive Mark Tanzer said: “The announcement of the general election means now is the time to engage with candidates locally to make sure they recognise the value of travel and tourism, and the importance of our industry in terms of both the economic and employment contribution we bring to communities across the country.

“We know the next parliament will make critical decisions that will shape the future of our industry – including on investments in the development of domestic sustainable aviation fuels industry, setting the rules for aviation and cruise around emissions, reforming education provision, and addressing our future relationship with the European Union.

“While Abta will be directly engaging and contacting all candidates across the country to share our own data and evidence on the importance of travel, the voice of local businesses is especially important to local candidates and I would urge everyone in the industry to speak up and have their voices heard.”

In April, Abta released its manifesto document which covers three core themes: positioning the UK as a leader in sustainable travel; promoting careers within travel and tourism; and creating the conditions for the travel industry to compete successfully.

Julia Lo Bue-Said, Advantage Travel Partnership chief executive, said on X, formerly Twitter: “We look forward to reading the manifestos put forward by all political parties and hope that they recognise the strong contribution that the UK outbound travel sector delivers to the UK economy, and the crucial role played by small and medium-sized businesses.”

Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, commented: “We need to see all political parties recognise this and will be working hard on behalf of our members during this period, to ensure manifestos from across the political spectrum reflect the strategic importance of our sector.

“We need to see evidence of measures that can unlock the potential of our sector to do even more. These include promises of action to lower the tax burden on our industry, initiatives that give us greater access to workers, and other measures that will support us in creating more jobs and further upskilling the workforce.”

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