Tourism minister Nigel Huddleston has rejected suggestions the travel industry has been "abandoned" by government.
In an interview with The Times, Huddleston reiterated his claim made to TTG last year that government support for travel and tourism had outstripped that received by other sectors, running to "billions upon billions".
Huddleston said while he recognised the sector was facing its biggest peacetime challenge, government support for the sector had been "immense" running to £25 billion across travel, hospitality and leisure.
"There are many sectors that didn’t get the same level of support as tourism," said Huddleston. "While I feel the travel industry’s pain, it also hurts to hear it feels abandoned – I’ve got 25 billion reasons to prove otherwise."
He made specific reference to an overwhelming majority of businesses accessing furlough cash and rates relief, but still travel – outbound travel, in particular – is yet to receive any sector-specific support, a focal point of the industry’s lobbying efforts, most recently in submissions to the government’s Global Travel Taskforce.