MPs to lobby for cut in tourism VAT

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

MPs to lobby for cut in tourism VAT

Related tags: United kingdom, England

The British Hospitality Association (BHA) is increasing pressure on the government to cut the rate of tourism VAT by establishing a cross party parliamentary group of MP’s to build momentum for the bill.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on the Visitor Economy will be chaired by Nigel Huddleston, Conservative MP for Mid Worcestershire, and Margaret Ritchie, the Social Democrat and Labour MP for South Down in Northern Ireland.

It will also promote measures to drive visitor numbers and investment across regional economies in Britain and Northern Ireland.

The Cut Tourism VAT campaign, a coalition of 43,000 hospitality businesses, argues that reducing the tourism tax from 20 to five per cent could be worth £20bn to the UK over 10 years​.

“The tourism industry is central to many sectors of the economy in Britain and Northern Ireland - in fact in some it can be the catalyst for economic growth and job creation,” said Ritchie.

“It provides enormous potential for growth and productivity. We have a real opportunity to boost tourism, and with the APPG's Cross Party support, I have renewed confidence that our voice can be heard across Parliament, in the Treasury and in wider Government circles."

The BHA will work with MP’s to host a Hospitality and Tourism Lobby Day in Parliament on 16 September, where BHA members and other business leaders will call for action on key issues affecting the industry.

The tourism sector has initially welcomed​ the Government's new five point plan to boost visitor numbers outside of London after it was announced by David Cameron last week.

The members of APPG on the Visitor Economy are as follows​:

Margaret Ritchie MP (SDLP)                   Co-Chair

Nigel Huddleston MP (Conservative)       Co-Chair

Albert Owen MP (Labour)

Dr Philippa Whitford MP (SNP)

Mark Williams MP (Liberal Democrat)

Caroline Lucas MP (Green)

Sammy Wilson MP (DUP)

Danny Kinahan MP (UUP)

Hywel Williams MP (Plaid Cymru)

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