A new report by Ignite Economics launched at UKHospitality’s summer conference this week shows that hospitality has grown its annual economic contribution by over 27% in the last 6 years, up by £20bn, taking the total to £93bn.
It also shows that employment in the sector has risen to 3.5 million, making hospitality the third largest employer in the country.
The report highlights that this growth can go much further with the right government support, which would allow it to create another half a million new jobs by 2027, and increasing its direct contribution by another £29bn.
It also details how hospitality operates at the centre of the economy. In 2022 alone – and in spite of post-pandemic challenges still stifling growth – hospitality contributed £54 billion in tax receipts to the Treasury, generated £20 billion worth of exports and £7 billion in business investment.
UKHospitality Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said, “These figures show just how much of an economic powerhouse hospitality is.
“Despite going through a pandemic and a cost-of-living crisis over the past six years, as a sector we have continued to overcome challenges to increase our value to the economy and cement our position as a major employer.
“It’s essential that our role as a strategically important sector for the nation is recognised by politicians, and that we work together to help grow our economic contribution, create more jobs and enhance our offering in communities.
“This report shows what can be achieved if we can stimulate growth, bear down on inflation and have an enabling and supportive policy environment in place for hospitality. The potential for the sector to deliver another £29 billion to the economy annually is an opportunity that the Government should be eager to embrace.
“I urge the Government to work even more closely with us, to seize the opportunities available and unleash the incredible potential of hospitality. This means tackling short-term issues that are stifling further growth, like enormous energy costs, food and drink inflation and damaging labour shortages, and really looking at the long-term structural issues holding businesses back, across business rates, licensing and planning.
“I’m incredibly proud of the resilience our sector has shown in recent years and the fact we continue to be a significant source of economic growth.
“Our sector has a long track-record of growing rapidly and driving the economy – these figures back that up and I hope the potential of hospitality is harnessed by the Government.”