GBTA Urges Leaders On Both Sides of the Aisle to Stop Playing Politics, Immediately Resume Talks to Save One of the U.S. Economy’s True Employment, GDP Drivers
Alexandria, Virginia (October 6, 2020) – The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world’s largest business travel association, expressed deep concern today over the breakdown of COVID-19 supplemental funding discussions between the White House and Congress.
The global pandemic has wreaked havoc on the business travel industry. In the initial round of CARES Act funding, U.S. airlines agreed to forego layoffs in exchange for $25 billion in grants. This agreement expired September 30. Since then, media reports of massive airline layoffs have noted that as many as 100,000 workers will be let go in the near future unless elected leaders take action immediately. According to the World and Travel Tourism Council (WTTC), international GDP losses could total as much as $5.5 trillion – with job losses for 2020 projected at nearly 200 million jobs.
“With hundreds of thousands of jobs hanging in the balance, the business travel sector and the American economy need help now, not a month from now,” said Dave Hilfman, the GBTA’s interim Executive Director. “Our association and its members urge the Administration and Congressional leaders not to wait on a relief package, because without additional financial support from the U.S government, companies nationwide will be at serious risk of a meltdown.”
Hilfman noted that the near-complete shutdown of business travel in the U.S. and internationally has negatively impacted the entire travel ecosystem, including travel agencies, hotels, ground transportation and airlines: “If the economy is to come roaring back, business travel will be a major player. We need the travel system to be ready to meet the demand.”
About the Global Business Travel Association
The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is the world’s premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA’s 9,000-plus members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy, and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts. To learn how business travel drives lasting business growth, visit www.gbta.org.