Ad industry demands Brexit deal and junk food rethink

borisThe Advertising Association is redoubling its efforts to get the Government to secure a good deal on Brexit in an open letter, which also heavily criticises the clampdown on junk food advertising.
The AA has rifled off letters to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Culture Secretary Nicky Morgan, Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom, and International Trade Secretary Liz Truss urging them to get their acts together.
The letter states that having arrangements that allow free flow of services across borders is critical for the continued success of the “world-beating” UK advertising industry. It adds: “We need a flexible migration system that allows the UK to access the best global talent. We want advertising agencies and production crews to be able to travel easily to and from the UK and the EU. We want international broadcasters, media and tech companies to continue to find the UK attractive as a global hub because in turn this ensures the advertising industry will thrive.”
As part of the trade body’s commitment to promoting exports of UK advertising services, it is planning to hold an Exports Month event in March 2020, building on this year’s event, and it has asked the Department for International Trade to support this and get involved.
The AA has been quick to point out that, in his first speech as Prime Minister in the House, Johnson said the UK must capitalise on the opportunities of leaving the EU and deregulate where we can to allow businesses to thrive.
However, it argues that the opposite is happening in terms of the Government’s obesity strategy and it has asked for a rethink on proposals for a pre-9pm ban on high fat, salt, sugar food advertising (HFSS).
The AA added: “While we fully support the Government’s aim to reduce childhood obesity by 2050, current plans for onerous new advertising restrictions on HFSS food and soft drink advertising will fail to achieve this objective and have severe adverse impacts for media revenues and the wider supply chain.
“The Government’s own analysis shows that the proposed restrictions would only remove around 1.7 calories per day from children’s diets, even if they were to succeed, which the evidence does not actually support.”
The industry body claims there are a number of examples of the sector supporting healthy lifestyle campaigns, from the Daily Mile, which gets children more active by running or walking a mile a day, to Veg Power.
The AA concludes: “It is our firm belief that working in partnership with industry gets better results, and on the obesity strategy, we urge a more collaborative approach.”

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