GBTA Expects Minor Growth in UK Business Travel

Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), a US-based company focusing on the business travel industry, is reporting that although business travel will slow down in 2012, its will still show some growth in the European markets.

In its second semi-annual GBTA BTI Outlook for the five most critical business travel markets in Europe of Germany, the UK, France, Italy and Spain, the company is reporting that while Italy and Spain are likely to continue to be in recession, Germany, France and the UK are expected to see a minor growth in GDP, of less than 1% in 2012.

UK business travel spend is likely to remain at a standstill at £24.69 billion in 2012, and is likely to grow at a rate of 2.8% in 2013.

Currently, the UK has the second highest spending on business travel amongst Western European nations. The company predictions include a decline in international outbound travel from the UK by around 3.1% and an increase in domestic business travel spending by 1.6% in the current year. In 2013, domestic business travel in the UK is likely to increase by 2.3%, and expenses on international business travel to increase by 3.9%.

Paul Tilstone, the managing director of GBTA Europe, said ‘Europe has unfolded pretty much as we expected in our inaugural Spring 2012 report. However, as a result of weaker first half prospects in Spain, Italy, France and the UK, our 2012 GDP growth expectation for the entire Euro Area has been downgraded slightly in the Fall report to -0.4%, from -0.3%. We are confident that the second analysis of the region, in our semi-annual report series, continues to provide strong, accurate insights into both short- and long-term trends in domestic and international outbound business travel activity.’

Overall, the company is forecasting that business travel spend in European markets are set to decline at 2.2% in 2012 to $177 billion and then increase by 1.4% in 2013.