Office of the Secretary of State for Wales
Wales to benefit from new tourism sector deal
The Prime Minister has announced a deal as Wales is set.
- First tourism sector deal will prepare Britain for an extra 9 million visits per year, with commitment to build 130,000 new hotel rooms by 2025
- £250,000 scheme launched to improve broadband connectivity in conference centres across the UK.
- New tourism data hub will help businesses better understand overseas visitors
- New focus on removing accessibility barriers for visitors with disabilities The Prime Minister has announced the UK’s first ever tourism sector deal today (Friday 28 June), reaffirming the UK’s global role as a key player in the industry.
The new deal will revolutionise the way data is used by the sector, through the creation of new Tourism Data Hub. The hub will collate regularly updated data showing the latest trends and spends, allowing businesses to better target overseas visitors.
The deal also includes a scheme worth £250,000 to improve broadband connectivity in conference centres across the UK.
Last year around 38 million people visited the UK, contributing £23 billion to the local economy. By 2025 experts predict that there will be an additional 9 million visitors to the UK. The new deal commits to building an additional 130,000 hotel rooms to respond to the increased demand for infrastructure.
The deal also outlines the government’s ambitions for the UK to become the most accessible destination for disabled visitors, through improvement of disabled facilities and access to destinations across the country.
Prime Minister Theresa May said:
As one of the most visited countries in the world, the UK is a world leader in international tourism and it is crucial that we remain globally competitive to meet growing demands.
That’s why today I am pleased to announce the UK’s first ever tourism sector deal, ensuring that we continue to innovate, boost connectivity and economic productivity and break down barriers for visitors with disabilities.
This deal recognises the important role tourism plays, and will continue to play, in showcasing what our great country has to offer.
Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns said:
Tourism is big business in Wales, and it is our ambition that it continues to provide sustainable employment and support our national economy.
This deal will make coming to Wales more accessible and improve conditions for domestic and international visitors, meaning they can make the most of our stunning scenery and famous Welsh culture.
Developed in partnership with the British Tourist Authority and Industry, the sector deal forms part of the UK Government’s Modern Industrial Strategy supporting the continued growth of the tourism sector, ensuring the UK remains globally competitive as a top tourist destination.
British Tourist Authority Chair Steve Ridgway CBE said:
This sector deal is a game-changer for tourism, one of the UK’s most valuable export industries, spelling a step-change in how we underpin the success of tourism for a generation, moving it to the top table as a leading industry for the UK Government’s future economic planning.
And it is a game-changer for the economy, growing the value of the industry and employment in tourism, fixing issues from skills and productivity to extending the season year-round, building stronger tourism destinations up and down the country and developing world-class experiences for domestic and international visitors.
Tourism is one of the most fiercely competitive global industries and this deal ensures we can continue to compete internationally as a top destination for visitors, driving major economic growth across the whole of the UK.
Notes to Editors:
- The number of employees in the tourism sector has increased by 17% since 2011. More than double the UK’s overall employment trends.
- In 2018 there were more than 940,000 international visitors to Wales. These visitors spent £404.6 million in 2018.
- The average international visitor to Wales stayed for 6.5 nights.
- The most popular visitor attraction was Bodnant Garden and the most visited city was Cardiff.
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