A call has gone out for agents and operators to highlight red tape which is hampering the industry.
Abta director and Barclays’ policy chief Christine Farnish is to chair Red Tape Taskforce to review the sector’s heavy burden of regulations and bureaucracy. The taskforce has been charged with making proposals for cutting regulation.
The move follows tourism minister John Penrose inviting the association to participate in efforts to remove unnecessary rules, guidelines and restrictions that the industry must comply with.
Farnish said: “The Government is serious about wanting to cut red tape and as an industry, we need to seize this opportunity to highlight which rules are unnecessary, add extra cost to our businesses for no gain or are simply out of date.
“We will be submitting a report direct to the tourism minister and we’ve already got a hit list of regulations that should be chopped ranging from unnecessary rules to well-intentioned but poorly drafted rules.
“This is a process every agent and operator should participate in; if we get this right we could save the industry’s businesses millions in compliance and operating costs.”
Luke Pollard, Abta head of public affairs, added: “Each year excessive and out-dated regulations cost our industry millions of pounds.
“In lobbying to get regulations like ATOL right, we must also keep one eye on rules that we should be getting rid of too. The tourism minister has made clear he wants to deregulate our sector and now is our chance to highlight what rules should be scrapped.”
Abta Midlands representative Sue Foxall said: “As an agent, I welcome this initiative that will enable me to spend less time wading through government red tape, and more time doing what, as agents, we do best – providing safe, secure, and memorable holidays for the holidaying public.
“As an industry, we must speak up, and call for smarter, simpler regulations where we can. The Red Tape Challenge is a perfect opportunity to do that.”
Agents and operators can email ideas to the taskforce at: email@example.com.