Tourism trade association UKinbound has criticised the Government for its "continued neglect" of inbound tourism at ABTA's annual Travel Matters conference.
The organisation's chief executive, Mary Rance, said she was worried about the Government's continued efforts to extol the virtues of inbound tourism, while failing, in her estimation, to introduce tangible measures to help grow the industry. She called for more action on the matter.
"How can we expect the UK to be a top-five 'must visit' country if the Government fails to tackle the lack of progress on visa processing, the punitive air passenger duty and VAT increases? The Olympics may well showcase the destination but it has actually been used by ministers as an excuse to halt any dialogue or progress," she said.
"Inbound tourism deserves better; it deserves more support from Government. Why hold up opportunities for UK economic growth? If we continue along the same slow path, how can we successfully drive inbound tourism? Immediate action is needed if we are to reach the desired target of attracting 40 million visitors to the UK by 2020."
By Neil Gerrard
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