16 Mar

ABTA responds to the budget

“The Chancellor used today’s Budget to reinforce the Government’s theme of planning for the future by calling this ‘a Budget for the next generation’. There were several announcements of specific interest to the travel industry.

While short-haul APD will be frozen,  ABTA is disappointed that the Chancellor used today’s Budget to raise Band B APD by inflation, rather than to address the uncompetitive level of APD overall.  With devolution of the tax to Scotland gathering pace, and the Scottish Government committed to a forward-looking 50% APD cut, we need urgent action from the Treasury to bring APD down across the whole of the country to ensure a competitive, fair rate.

ABTA welcomes the significant investment in the UK’s transport infrastructure announced today, especially commitments to progressing HS3 between Leeds and Manchester, and Crossrail 2 in London. Following the creation of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC), it is encouraging to see its recommendations being adopted by the Government. ABTA believes it is imperative that the NIC’s role is firmly established, and maintained, if short-term political wrangling is to be removed from long term investment decisions; this is a positive start.                                             

The reduction to business tax bills for many small travel businesses is also good news, as well as further reductions in corporation tax, and the freezing of fuel duty for a sixth consecutive year.” - Stephen D’Alfonso, ABTA Head of Public Affairs

See also ABTA's Budget Briefing