General Travel News

WTTC job cuts may stagnate tourism sector

The organization representing the world’s foremost private-sector travel and tourism businesses has reacted with dismay to reports that up to half the staff at the Department for Culture, Media, and Sport could face redundancy under government austerity cuts this year. The World Travel&Tourism Council (WTTC), whose members come from many of the biggest tourism organizations and have significant interests in the UK, is protesting cuts that could “stagnate” growth in the sector.

“Yet again, this coalition government has shown incredible short-sightedness and bad judgement," said Jean-Claude Baumgarten, president and CEO of WTTC. “The travel and tourism economy is worth £140 billion to the UK, a similar share of GDP to the financial and business services sector (10.1 percent compared to 9.2 percent, respectively, in 2009), but while the latter received a bailout to the tune of £850 billion and still struggles in its lengthy recovery, the government appears to be actively working to stagnate growth in travel and tourism.”

WTTC points to the UK government’s pledge to prevent expansion at London’s biggest aviation hub – despite the threat of increasing competition to the title from other European airports – the overreaction to the volcanic eruption, the continuing challenges of visa processes and procedures, and unfair taxation from Air Passenger Duty to a VAT increase, which will raise the prices of many of the services offered to visitors.

These, coupled with potential cuts to the department responsible for supporting Britain’s leading tourist institutions – and promoting those institutions to the world – could harm the travel and tourism industry which supports 3.1 million jobs and attracts £24.3 billion in visitor exports in the UK.

“If it continues down this path, the UK will quickly lose its competitive advantage and find itself fall from the top ten league of international destinations,” continued Baumgarten. “We are not asking for a handout, but the private sector needs this government to implement policies that will help it thrive and quickly create new employment opportunities to help bring the UK further out of recession.”

WTTC plans to meet with the Prime Minister to raise his understanding of the potential of the travel and tourism industry – and the challenges it faces – and get his government’s support.

More General Travel News
Swiss Belhotel to open 4 new hotels in the GCC
Abu Dhabi and Wizz Air announce establishment of new low cost airline
Emirates touches down in Mexico City
Latest Travel News
Abu Dhabi and Wizz Air announce establis...
Emirates touches down in Mexico City...
Air Arabia named as Middle East and Afr...
Featured Sights To See
Khalidiya Public Garden

Khalidiya Public Garden

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Khalidiya Public Garden has recently been overhauled and now comprises of a minute faction of the Abu Dhabi Co-operative. The Khalidiya Children’s Garden is "ladies only". They are both very well-liked when it comes to evening and weekend picnics, chiefly during the winter season. Address: Baubybag Street, Corniche Road, Abu Dhabi Tel: +971 2 366155    &nbs...

Mannerheim Museum

Mannerheim Museum

Helsinki, Finland

This museum used to be the dwelling of the military leader Carl Gustav Emil Mannerheim. Today it serves as a museum to display his personal belongings and other special artifacts that he acquired throughout his life and his long travels as a soldier. Admission costs 8 Euros. Opening Time: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 4pm. Address: Kalliolinnantie 14                     ...

Casablanca Twin Center

Casablanca Twin Center

Casablanca, Morocco

Casablanca Twin Center is a bold piece of architecture that represents a modern and enterprising Casablanca. Reaching a height of 100m, this building is a vibrant commercial center. The tower houses offices, dwellings and commercial establishments, the latter on the first five floors. Terraces, bars and restaurants occupy the top floor. Three basement car parks provide ample parking. Address: B...

Pantheon

Pantheon

Paris, France

When Louis XV fell ill in 1744, he vowed to replace the ruined church of the Abbey of St. Genevieve if he would recover.  He did, and construction began two years later. By the time the church was completed in 1790 (due to financial troubles), France was in the midst of the Revolution.  The National Assembly ordered the church turned into a mausoleum for French heroes. After the revoluti...