End of duty-free shopping for tourists may mean big job losses

Telegraph30/09/20 Paul Barnes, chief executive of the Association of International Retail, criticised the decision to scrap tax-free shopping.  “Making the UK the only European country not to offer [it] to international visitors sends totally the wrong message to the world. And it needlessly damages the UK’s retail, tourism and manufacturing industries, already struggling to survive Covid-19,” Read the full article … Read More

End of VAT refunds would deter Chinese UK visitors

China Daily25/09/20 Paul Barnes chief executive of the Association of International Retail said: “Chinese visitors are by far the biggest international shoppers in the UK and shopping is the main reason they visit. If Britain ends its tax-free scheme, Chinese travellers are much more likely to visit any other European country for shopping. At a time when the British tourism … Read More

Retailers On Collision Course With U.K. Treasury Over Abolition Of Tax-Free Shopping

Forbes23/09/20 The Association of International Retail (AIR) says that one reason the U.K. government is dropping tax-free shopping is that the current paper-based validation system used by the tax department, HMRC, would not be able to manage VAT refunds once they become available to EU tourists from January. EU travellers account for 70% of all U.K. visitors. AIR’s CEO Paul … Read More

VAT change ‘will cost Edinburgh £90m’ and could affect 1800 jobs

The National22/09/20 Paul Barnes: “The Government’s decision to eradicate tax free shopping in the UK will impact Britain’s reputation and appeal as a global shopping destination, providing further damage to our struggling economy. Outside of London, Edinburgh is a key tourist attraction for visitors, proven in the growing number of international flights to Edinburgh airport. The removal of tax free … Read More