Commenting on the GDP figures for February 2021 published by the ONS, Chief Executive of Chambers Wales, Heather Anstey-Myers, said:
“The latest data shows an encouraging return to growth in February, during a time when businesses were subject to alert level four measures in Wales and other restrictions across the UK.
“Now, as we welcome the long-awaited return of non-essential retail this week, the modest increase will provide confidence to businesses that we are heading in the right direction.
“As the vaccination rollout continues and consumers begin to gain confidence and return to face-to-face activities, businesses need support and viable solutions to ensure that this positive news becomes a sustainable, long-term trend.
“This is particularly pertinent for the hospitality industry. Hotels, restaurants, pubs and cafes have been repeatedly forced to close for weeks or months at a time throughout the pandemic. Although the sector will be able to reopen partially from the end of this month, there is a need for a collaborative approach between businesses and the Welsh and UK Governments ahead of the upcoming review dates to ensure that the industry has opportunities to recover and thrive.
“We continue to support leaders of hospitality businesses, arming them with practical advice and expert insights in our upcoming Recover, Rebuild, Revitalise: Hospitality event, so that they can approach the re-ignition of their industry with confidence. The event will bring together prominent figures from businesses across the sector, sharing their experiences of the challenges that the industry has faced in the pandemic and how these can be effectively overcome.”