The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is predicting a loss of $1.3 billion in travel-related spend in the US due to “political uncertainty”.

The travel group said the Trump travel ban followed by an electronics ban for passengers travelling from 10 mainly Muslim countries and the potential for that to be expanded to Europe is hitting the US economy.

Using first quarter ticketing data from the Airlines Reporting Corp. (ARC), publicly available travel data and GBTA’s economic research and models, GBTA developed an ‘uncertainty forecast’ for 2017 showing the impact this mounting geopolitical uncertainty is having on the economy.

The $1.3bn predicted loss includes $250 million lost in spending from inbound business travellers from Europe and Middle East.

“The even greater concern is that the longer-term impact on business travel will become even larger as companies begin to host meetings and events in other destinations,” said the organisation.

The GBTA said the “devastating economic impact” from political issues could take years to recover from. “U.S. GDP will take a nearly $300 million hit. More than 4,200 jobs could be lost along with $175 million in wages and $70 million in tax collections. Europe is forecast to lose over $250 million in air fare spending and the Middle East will lose over $80 million in air fare.”

It added: “Business travel drives lasting business growth and is a leading indicator for jobs and the economy at large. Continuing to enact policies that discourage business travel will cause a rippling effect across the travel industry and the overall economy. We urge the Trump Administration to consider the important lasting impact of business travel and enact policies going forward that preserve both our national security and our economy for the future.”

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