UKHospitality has voiced concerns over the decision to put Marketing Edinburgh "into hibernation" and lay-off staff, urging the City of Edinburgh Council to reconsider.
Marketing Edinburgh works with members, partners and stakeholders to champion and promote Scotland's capital city locally, nationally and internationally. UKHospitality believes that closing it down temporarily will have a "very serious knock-on effect" for the city's vital hospitality and tourism sector.
Willie Macleod, UKHospitality executive director for Scotland, said: "Hospitality will play a hugely important role in helping to rebuild economies once the crisis has passed. We will need to hit the ground running once it is safe to do so. If Edinburgh, one of the UK's premier tourist destinations, is unable to market itself as being open for business after the crisis, it could have a devastating effect for future business."
UKHospitality fears that without the support of Edinburgh's marketing body, the recovery process of Scotland's hospitality and tourism businesses after the coronavirus crisis will be more difficult and "experience significant barriers to recovery and lose competitive advantage to other innovatively marketed destinations".
Macleod concluded: "We urge the City of Edinburgh Council to rethink its decision. At a time such as this, businesses need all the support they can get."