Henry Smith MP has led a cross-party group of parliamentarians in writing to the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, calling for the new administration to back UK aviation, travel and tourism as it continues to recover from the impacts of Covid-19.
The letter, which Henry organised as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Future of Aviation, calls for the new Prime Minister to put in place support for the sector to help it tackle current challenges and boost its recovery.
The Crawley MP, whose constituency includes Gatwick Airport, is leading the calls for the Government to:
- Give specific responsibility for overseeing the cross-government approach to international travel policy to an individual Minister
- Introduce minimum staffing levels for Border Force at UK airports
- Confirm commitment to the Jet Zero Strategy and put in place levels of price stability to attract investment and new entrants to the market
- Work with partners to create an international travel toolkit to be prepared for future crises
- Work with industry to put in place a long-term skills strategy to support jobs in aviation, travel, tourism and sustainable aviation
The letter has been signed by 55 parliamentarians including former ministers Stephen Crabb and Mims Davies.
“Whilst our aviation, travel and tourism sectors have had a good summer season, we must be under no illusion that they are fully recovered from the impacts of the last two years.
“As an island nation, our aviation industry is one of the key drivers of our economy and a fully recovered and fighting fit industry will be vital as the new Government looks to tackle the challenges ahead.
“It is crucial that the Prime Minister makes backing these industries a key part of her agenda and supports them as they continue their journey to a full recovery. This includes support for a challenging winter season ahead but also recommitting and redoubling our efforts to support the sector’s transition to net zero.
“Our aviation, travel and tourism industries were amongst the worst affected and the last to see Covid restrictions removed. We must build on the progress made over the summer and support these industries in the months and years ahead as a part of a vision for a truly global Britain.
“With so many Crawley workers depending on the continued success of Gatwick Airport this is a cause I look forward to pursuing with the new Prime Minister.”