Prime minister Rishi Sunak has confirmed that the government is committed to introducing a registration scheme for short-term holiday lets.
Sunak received a question from Nickie Aiken, Conservative MP for Cities of London and Westminster, during Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday (7 December).
Aiken pointed out that Westminster has 13,000 Airbnb properties, which she said could cause "real issues for local communities".
She asked if the government was considering introducing a registration scheme to help councils "properly manage this growing sector".
Sunak replied that the levelling up secretary had committed to delivering a "new tourist accommodation registration scheme".
The prime minister said this would "increase appropriate regulation of the sector" and allow the government to "better understand and monitor the impact [of short-term lets] on local communities".
He added: "We will also consult on whether planning permissions should be required for new short-term holiday lets, especially in tourist hotspots."
Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, said: "I'm very pleased to hear the prime minister commit to delivering a tourist accommodation scheme that will include short-term lets and it is clear recognition that the Government has listened to the concerns raised by UKHospitality."
UKHospitality has been campaigning for a registration scheme in England that will bring requirements for short-term holiday lets in line with the rest of the hospitality industry.
She added: "It's essential that this registration scheme can be properly enforced and can help bring short-term lets up to the high standards of our hotels, which abide by strict fire safety, health and safety, and accessibility rules.
"A registration scheme that can deliver this not only levels the playing field across our accommodation outlets, but also delivers huge guarantees and benefits for the consumer too.
"It's crucial that the entire sector is operating to the same standards, for the good of business, the economy and the customer, and we look forward to working with the Levelling Up Secretary on it."
Hoteliers in Edinburgh welcomed the introduction of tighter restrictions on short-term lets in the city in September. The changes mean Airbnb hosts now have to show proof of planning permission in order to operate in the Scottish capital.
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