ABTA TC: Social unrest and slow growth continue

ABTA TC: Social unrest and slow growth continue

Events in the Middle East will continue to affect the travel industry into next year amongst on-going social unrest and crude oil prices, ABTA delegates have heard.

Economist Anthony Hilton said low economic growth will continue next year with more volatility and social unrest expected, while the price of crude oil is set to drop between US$100-110 going into early 2013 (currently at US$114).

Economists speaking at its annual convention were generally optimistic saying confidence is on its way up although businesses will remain cautious going into 2013. Robert Miller from the Telegraph said the economic situation will “look better in 2013” while Hilton said that while there has been a slump in investment and confidence, he is optimistic it will pick up next year.

He used the example of the car industry, another discretionary spend, to explain that if individual car sales are up than it sets out a good precedent for other goods. However, analysts warned that businesses will “only start to feel normal” in 2014 and beyond and should not expect the highs of 2007/08.

Throughout the day many speakers suggested that to survive during this time the industry has to change and adapt. Kevin Sheehan, CEO and president of Norwegian Cruise Line showed how his experiences on Undercover Boss helped change his view of the company’s service, while The Next Big Thing’s William Hagen urged the industry to not be afraid of change. 

Gary Marshall
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Gary Marshall
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