Central London loses out on £10.9bn due to lack of tourism

Sadiq Khan tourism covid-19 pandemic lockdown
The lack of nearby office workers has also affected the economy
// Central London economy continues to feel impact of Covid-19 pandemic
// Tourism spend declined by £10.9bn in 2020 compared with the previous year
// Central London contributed £38.7bn to the Treasury prior to Covid-19

New research has shown that the central London economy has been heavily impacted by a lack of tourism during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Tourism spend declined by £10.9 billion in 2020 compared with the previous year due to travel restrictions, London Mayor Sadiq Khan said.

The study from VisitBritain revealed that spending from international tourists in central London was £7.4 billion lower in 2020 year on year and domestic tourism was down £3.5 billion.

READ MORE: Shaftesbury swings to £699m full-year loss as Covid-19 pandemic hits valuations

The lack of nearby office workers has also affected the economy as people have been ordered to work from home if they can.

Prior to the pandemic, central London contributed £38.7 billion to the Treasury.

“When London thrives, the whole country thrives, so supporting our city’s businesses to survive the coming months will be absolutely vital,” Khan said.

“With the right support from the government, more businesses will survive and contribute to what this report shows could be a rapid recovery, once tourists and commuters return in numbers.”

In December, Shaftesbury said it plummeted to a full-year loss of £699 million after the pandemic battered rental income and caused property values to plunge.

Shares in the West End property giant – whose portfolio consists if retail premises across London’s Carnaby Street, Chinatown and Seven Dials precincts – slipped after it swung to the pre-tax loss for the 12 months to September, following a £26 million profit in 2019.

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