The UK Travel Retail Forum (UKTRF), the trade association representing airports and travel retailers, has called on the government to urgently step in to support the UK aviation and travel retail sector as it continues to see a significant impact as a result of travel restrictions around the world.
Recent decisions taken by the government as they act to protect citizens from the spread of Covid-19 have already had profound impacts on the aviation and maritime industry, leading to a 70%+ traffic reduction over the last few days. Those worst affected are airport operators, travel retail operators and landside, airside and maritime concessionaires.
Francois Bourienne, chair of the UK Travel Retail Forum said: “COVID-19 poses a clear threat to the UK and international travel system. The government has previously indicated it would take action to minimise the economic damage caused by this pandemic. We know that this crisis is likely to get worse before it gets better, and the need for urgent government support measure is clear.”
The UKTRF have written to ministers asking for support measures that will enable the industry to weather the worst of the crisis. The requested measures include short term financial relief, and the inclusion of the industry in any government-backed compensation schemes developed as the crisis continues.