British PM Cameron announces new plans to boost tourism

British PM Cameron announces new plans to boost tourism

London: Prime Minister David Cameron announced the government’s new Five Point Plan to boost tourism right across the UK – spreading the benefits of one of fastest growing sectors beyond the capital, helping to create jobs and rebalance the economy.

A new inter-ministerial group will be formed to co-ordinate and align action across government.The group, headed by the Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, and including ministers from across government, the Department for Communities and Local Government, BIS, DEFRA, Home Office, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, will focus on five key areas:

A better co-ordinated sector: the sector is too fragmented – we want to see local attractions and tourism organisations collaborating to grow the sector for everyone not competing.

Skills and jobs: Driving and retaining talent in the sector to encourage growth

Common sense regulation: Reforming regulation sensibly to drive competition and improve the tourism offer for visitors

Transport: Forging innovative links between the transport and tourism sectors to help visitors travel outside of the capital

An improved welcome: Delivering a world class welcome at the Border

Ministers from the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland Governments are also invited to join the group when relevant according to a statement of gov.uk.

Prime Minister Cameron has also announced a £1 million ‘Rail for Tourism innovation’ competition, which will call for ideas to transform the travel experience for visitors to the UK and make exploring the UK by rail more attractive to tourists.

The plan will build upon the enormous success of the 2011 tourism strategy, which culminated in a record year for overseas visitors in 2014 and now sees the industry contribute £60 billion to the UK economy a year.

“Millions of overseas tourists visit the UK every year and most take in the sights of London. But Britain has so much more to offer, from the Cornish Riviera to the Scottish Highlands and everything in between,” Prime Minister said.

‘For many areas tourism is a key industry bringing jobs, growth and security for working people. Tourism supports almost one in 10 jobs in the UK and we want to rebalance the economy to make sure this boost is felt right across the country.’

“ Tourism is a vital industry that brings jobs and growth to local economies across Britain. There are so many world-class things to see and do in the UK, and we need to make sure visitors are experiencing as many of them as possible,” Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, said.

According to a report of gov.uk, tourism has grown quickly since the government’s previous tourism strategy in 2011. The direct contribution of the tourism sector to the economy in 2014 was almost £60 billion – up a fifth since 2010. Last year, international visitors spent a record £21.8 billion in local economies across the country, with nearly every region seeing a rise in visitor numbers or spend.

In 2013, it was estimated that 9% of jobs in the UK were in tourism-related industries and jobs in the sector were growing at almost double the rate of other industries.

Source: Gov.uk July 19, 2015