Following today’s (22 September) statement by the Prime Minister regarding new restrictions in the wake of increasing rates of COVID-19 infections, Advertising Association Chief Executive Stephen Woodford has made the following statement.
“Advertising is a driver of economic activity and growth and with business and consumer confidence so fragile, we call on the Government to match further restrictions on economic activity with measures to alleviate their impact, particularly to continue to support jobs and businesses that are hardest hit, like many of the media sectors dependent on advertising. This is particularly important, given the indication that such restrictions will be necessary over the next six months, coming as they do during the biggest quarter annually for ad spend in the run-up to Christmas.
“Advertising can play a major role in both helping the national public health effort and the recovery and the AA has proposed an advertising tax credit for consideration in the Chancellor’s autumn statement as a means to stimulate the broad economy. More specifically, we ask Government to look again at aspects such as business rates relief on office premises and out-of-home poster sites, plus sectoral support for the most challenged areas of the advertising economy including entertainment, leisure, travel and hospitality, as well as the extension of help for SMEs and freelancers and other means to support employment as the furlough scheme comes to an end.”