James Ramsbotham, chief executive, North East England Chamber of Commerce said:
“We broadly welcome the Prime Minister’s announcements today. The intention to look at travel restrictions and when they can be lifted is good news but they must be done in a way to build confidence.
“The covid vaccine passport idea for venues is similarly a useful idea although not a complete panacea as some people are unable to have the vaccine and we can’t penalise them because of that fact. We also have to mindful of people who may need support because they are frightened of going back into the world at large.
“Opportunities for twice weekly testing are beneficial up to a point but will never be a substitute for the effectiveness of mask wearing and distancing.
“We need to ensure restrictions are relaxed in a considered and reassuring manner to build confidence and not risk damaging reversals, especially at short notice. Hospitality businesses in particular must be allowed to open and then be supported to stay open.”