Live from Brussels – Issue 111
Welcome to another issue of our ‘Live from Brussels’ newsletter.
After an overall positive summer season, with demand going up, and occupancy rates gradually approaching pre-pandemic figures, the European tourism and hospitality sector is still bound to face significant challenges in the upcoming months.
Our industry’s future remains uncertain. While people are at the heart of hospitality, after COVID-19, companies in the sector are facing severe labour and skills shortages. We recently published two position papers proposing solutions to tackle this crucial issue.
The war in Ukraine is causing inflation and energy costs to skyrocket. You are most likely experiencing this crisis on your own skin: due to the increase in your gas and electricity bills, in the price of the food you eat, and the services you benefit from. It is the same for hospitality businesses, as they, too, are experiencing steep price increases while having to deal the post-COVID-19 recovery.
The SMEs and micro-enterprises that make up our industry are especially vulnerable to this situation and we fear that many of them will not be able to keep their doors open for long, should such circumstances continue. We were indeed glad to see that, in this year’s State of the European Union address, President Von der Leyen stressed the need to remove the obstacles that still hold SMEs back.
In this issue, we had an interesting discussion on global energy market disruptions – along with the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), and the Commission’s REPowerEU Plan – with Mr Stefan Moser, Head of Unit at the European Commission (DG ENERGY), whom I want to thank for a clear overview and his contribution to this issue.
In other news, HOTREC is looking at a very busy season ahead, especially regarding regulatory developments of Short-Term Rentals (STRs) in Europe. After publishing our report on STRs in July, we are now expecting the European Commission to present its Short-Term Rental Initiative by the end of the year.
The team is also looking forward to meeting our members in Stockholm for our 85th General Assembly at the beginning of October. We hope the two days of activities will be a relevant and fun opportunity to exchange best practices and views on pressing issues for European hospitality.
Enjoy your reading!