Theresa May announced an ambitious new Tourism Sector Deal this morning, pledging the construction of 130,000 new hotel rooms, 10,000 apprenticeships and much more.

The events and tourism industries have warmly welcomed the deal, which will provide significant funding and support over the coming years.

Michael Hirst OBE is chair of the Business Visits and Events Partnership (BVEP) and Events Industry Board (EIB), which advised the government in the creation of the deal. He commented: “The EIB and the BVEP welcome the announcement of a Tourism Sector Deal.

We are delighted that business events feature so prominently in the Deal with the supplementary publication of an International Business Events Action Plan. This is a very positive endorsement of the importance of the sector to showcase the UK key economic sectors, grow trade, exports and inward investment.

“We are delighted that business events feature so prominently in the Deal.”

“It will also generate additional international business visitors and improve productivity through the utilisation of capacity across the UK. The opportunity to increase skills and attract talent is strongly featured in the Deal as we move to a more competitive landscape.

“The UK has always been a world-class destination for business events. Now there’s a greater opportunity to attract and grow more international events throughout Britain”.

James Aitken, chair of tourism trade association UKinbound, said: “We are really pleased that a Sector Deal has been secured with the Government and congratulate all those involved who have helped to drive this work forward.

“Tourism is a major contributor to the UK economy but is made up primarily of small businesses and cuts across many different policy areas.

“For the first time, we will have a national strategy that will help bring the sector together and collaborate on activities and initiatives.

“This will ultimately help visitors get to destinations quickly and easily, have a better experience in those destinations, improve productivity and efficiency, and raise awareness about the fantastic employment opportunities the industry provides.”