NI Executive urged to implement wider financial mitigation for Tourism Industry

Posted 17 Mar, 2020

Responding to the statement from the UK Chancellor, the NI Tourism Alliance have called on the NI Executive to urgently set out a package of mitigation measures and intentions of how they will distribute the NI share of the £3.5bn from the Chancellor in support of businesses.

The UK Chancellor announced a further £20bn in direct support for business and an increase to the Business Continuity Loan fund to £330bn.

NITA CEO, Joanne Stuart said "Every hour there are announcements of businesses closing and staff being made redundant, and the statement from our Finance Minister, Conor Murphy evidences that there is little understanding of the immediate need for joined-up action to help businesses who are days away from collapse due to no cash flow.

At our recent meetings with the Economy Minister and Department we have ensured that the message is clear of how urgent this situation is. We have also written to the NI Executive setting out what is required. This included a payment holiday of 6 months on rates and well as a grant fund to enable businesses to cover other costs and support to enable businesses to retain and support staff."

NITA are part of the UK Tourism Industry Council and Tourism Industry Emergency Response group and have been feeding in directly to the UK government.

"The UK Chancellor’s response recognises the urgency of the economic crisis we are in and we now need to see Leadership and collective responsibility from our NI Executive.

There is a significant lag between assurances being given by the Chancellor and those being delivered by the Executive. Our members do not have time for politicians to ‘digest’ the implications of national announcements. Jobs are being shed now, cancellations are happening now, business are ready to close now. Actions speak louder than words."