Bringing the industry together on lobbying priorities

 Monday, June 5, 2023 


In a couple of weeks’ time, on 14 June, we’ll be holding the travel industry’s leading policy conference – ABTA’s Travel Matters.

This year’s theme is Travel in 2030, and I’m pleased we’ll be hearing from both Baroness Vere, Aviation and Maritime Minister, and Mike Kane MP, Labour’s Shadow Transport Minister. They’ll be sharing their vision for the travel industry and its future relationship with Westminster.

With a General Election on the horizon, it is great that we’ll hear from the two main political parties – and their presence reflects ABTA’s standing and influence with politicians, and our role as the travel industry’s leading voice to Government.

Elsewhere on the agenda will be three major policy challenges facing our sector today; the UK’s relationship with the EU post-Brexit, sustainability, and the future of travel and tourism education.

On UK-EU relations, we’ll be looking at the barriers that have faced UK travel companies since the UK’s departure from the EU, especially around labour mobility, and what the industry needs from policymakers to make things easier in the years ahead.

To that end we’ll be sharing findings from a new joint research project with Seasonal Businesses in Travel (SBiT) exploring what has happened to labour mobility since the end of the Brexit transition period, and what this might mean for future entry routes into the industry and growth. This session will outline our calls for the extension of the youth mobility scheme and other policy changes that we’re seeking as we move towards the re-negotiation of the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

UK staff working abroad is an important entrance point for many people in the industry – as is completing travel and tourism qualifications at college and university. With the Government reviewing level 3 further education courses, Travel Matters will also examine the outlook for travel and tourism qualifications and what the industry must do to support this important route into our sector. ABTA’s Vicki Wolf will be discussing this issue along with Claire Steiner who is the Director & Chair of Education and Training Committee at ITT.

And, as we build back from the pandemic, we’ve also seen sustainability once again rise to the top of the policy agenda. ABTA is a proud member of Sustainable Aviation, the coalition of UK companies involved in aviation and aerospace that is playing a leading role in transitioning the industry to a more sustainable future, and we’ll be hearing about the launch of the latest carbon roadmap that shows how the industry plans to achieve net zero by 2050.

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