Hospitality industry leaders have called upon the UK government to provide urgent assistance to the sector, in the wake of the damage caused by the Covid-19 crisis.
A joint letter, signed by around 120 industry representatives, urged the Prime Minister to commit to a programme of business support and investment.
According to UKHospitality, sales across the sector are expected to be 56% lower than last year, reducing revenues by £73.4 billion. Half of businesses reportedly do not expect to reach breakeven until the end of next year.
The trade body says that in view of this government aid is urgently needed to prevent further business failures and maintain up to a million jobs.
The letter set out three recommended areas in which the government can support businesses:
Kate Nicholls, UKHospitality’s chief executive, said: “Our sector has been a high-profile casualty of this crisis and businesses are only now just beginning to reopen.
“For those businesses that have survived, the hard work begins now. Many businesses have taken huge hits and hundreds of thousands of jobs are still in the balance.
“If we want to make a real success of this reopening, keep businesses alive and jobs secure, then the government needs to provide support. Support from the government has been extremely helpful in keeping venues afloat and it has saved jobs. There is no possibility of stopping now, though.
“Anything less than a full show of support from the government risks undoing much of the good work that has already been done and will cause lasting damage to employment and the UK economy.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020
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