WASHINGTON—The AHLA urges Congress to support the Brand USA program.
The Brand USA program is a bipartisan-supported program that drives $21 billion in business sales and two million jobs. The AHLA is concerned that the current administration’s budget proposal eliminates federal funding for Brand USA.
“Travel and tourism is a critical driver of the U.S. economy, generating $2.3 trillion in economic output and responsible for one in nine American jobs. That’s why we are concerned that the administration’s budget proposal eliminates federal funding for Brand USA, a public-private partnership that has been a catalyst responsible for driving more than 4.4 million incremental international visitors to the U.S. and supports thousands of American jobs,” said Katherine Lugar, AHLA president and CEO.
In the last several years, Brand USA has been a powerful force in providing America with a competitive edge and has served as a highly successful promotional program attracting millions of visitors from countries near and far. The program boosts the U.S. economy as Brand USA results in nearly $32 billion in total economic impact, contributes nearly $4 billion in federal, state and local taxes, and supports an average of nearly 50,000 incremental jobs a year—jobs that cannot be exported and which extend well beyond the travel industry,” she continued.
Brand USA was created by Congress in 2010 and started in 2011. It has been funded through visa fees, and Congress voted in 2014 to reauthorize the program until 2020.
Last year, Brand USA’s marketing resulted in more than one million additional U.S. visitors and $4.1 billion in visitor spending.