The Evening Standard has reinstated its important campaign to bring back tax-free shopping.
Evening Standard join our call to “Scrap Tourist Tax”
As a core supporter since the beginning of our campaign, we know the Evening Standard’s ongoing efforts will be instrumental in helping us impress upon the Government that they need to reverse their decision and scrap this tourist tax before irreparable damage is done to London’s global reputation.
Speaking to the Evening Standard, Dee Corsi, Chief Executive of the New West End Company said: “We have campaigned tirelessly for a reversal of the decision to end tax-free shopping, so we welcome the Treasury’s request for data that we know will prove this is an economic own-goal.
“According to the Oxford Economics forecast, the last six months will have cost the UK £1.5 billion in missed international sales. International visitors are now realising that the UK is 20 per cent more expensive than other European cities, and West End businesses are suffering the consequences.
“Shopping is a key driver in deciding which city break to go on. Ever since tax-free shopping was abolished, international visitors have been returning home from our shores less likely to come back, and more likely to head to France or Spain next time.
“The latest data shows a genuine behaviour change, spend is being diverted to other European cities and the situation is worsening. Our message to the Prime Minister is clear — we need to restore tax-free shopping as quickly as possible. And he should start by commissioning an independent report into the direct impact this decision has had on the entire tourism ecosystem.”