New research added and Queens Speech update

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1. UKINBOUND have recently published a timely, research-based report which aims to fill the evidence gap around potential impacts on UK tourism arising from a future points-based immigration scheme, linked to a potential £30k salary floor for “highly skilled and skilled” workers.  The report details the importance of EU and other international workers to the industry, the problems associated with anything like a £30k salary floor and suggests other alternative approaches, including adding language skills in this sector to the list of skills shortages.

The research notes that while on average the “industry” in general is reliant on EU (c 10% of the total workforce) and other overseas workers, some regions and some sub-sectors are far more dependant, for example the Lake District. Both the executive summary and full report are available at:

https://britishdestinations.net/1194-2/content/a-perfect-storm-the-end-of-free-movement-and-its-impact-on-the-uk-tourism-workforce-2019/

2. In yesterday’s Queen’s Speech a number of the 22 plus Bills outlined will have direct or indirect impact on tourism.  These range from the Agricultural Bill which will move agricultural payment and support from an EU yield based system to a stewardship and environmental basis, the Immigration and  Social Security Co-ordination Bill that would see the adoption of a points based system from 2021 and the Airline Insolvency Bill which would allow/compel insolvent companies to use their own aircraft to recover customers.  Other Bills aim to improve Broadband, modernise UK air-traffic control arrangements and reform UK rail with an emphasis on simplified fares and ticketing. There also plans to change arrangements for the allocation of tips from a voluntary code of practice to a regulated regime which allocates all tips, in full to the employees in a fair and transparent manner.

In normal circumstances, we would now start to look at the proposed Bills in far more detail and start to consider what if any aspects need to be influenced and how and when that might take place as the various Bills progress towards enactment, over the life of the current Parliament.  These are of course far from normal times. Once we have a little more clarity around the Brexit outcomes and the potential (or not) for a General Election in the coming few months, we can then look again at proposed legislative programme.

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