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MPI president speaks out against Trump's plans to cut Brand USA

Paul van Deventer calls Donald Trump’s proposed elimination of tourism marketing agency “very concerning"

Pictured: President Trump plans to axe Brand USA

MPI president and CEO Paul van Deventer has called Donald Trump’s plans to axe the Brand USA tourism marketing agency “very concerning”.

Funding for Brand USA is set to be cut under President Trump’s proposed budget plans. Van Deventer is calling on event professionals to urge the US Congress to support the US travel and meeting industries by protecting Brand USA.

He said: “The news about the possible elimination of Brand USA is very concerning. Doing so would certainly have long term negative impacts on travel and tourism, which are key drivers of the U.S. economy representing $865 billion (£672bn) in direct spending; 15 per cent of this figure - about $103bn (£80bn) -  is a result of meetings.

“Together, we must urge the US Congress to support both the travel and meeting industries by protecting Brand USA.”

Katie O'Neill of the Power of Travel Coalition has written to travel leaders to urge them to contact elected officials about the issue.

She said: “Since we worked together in 2009 to create Brand USA, the program has delivered incredible results. In the past four years, Brand USA generated an additional 4.3 million visitors from other countries, which added $29.5bn (£22.9bn) to our economy. Not only that, Brand USA adds an average of 50,900 new US-based jobs annually as a result of the increases in international travellers to the US. Most importantly, it doesn't spend a dime of federal taxpayer dollars.

"We must act today and protect Brand USA. To make your voice heard, email your senators and representatives and urge them to support Brand USA in their final budget.
Make your voice heard and ensure that lawmakers know how critical Brand USA is for our competitiveness in the growing international travel marketplace."

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