WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The National Retail Federation today released the following statement from NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay in support of the Jobs Originated Through Launching Travel (JOLT) Act:
“With the average international tourist spending well over $4,000 shopping in our stores, staying at our hotels, and eating at our restaurants, efforts aimed at encouraging more foreign travel is a simple way to spur economic growth and job creation. This is especially true in the retail industry.
“By expanding the Visa Waiver Program to cover more citizens from emerging economies and markets like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Israel, and Poland, and reforming our antiquated visa review and approval processes, the JOLT Act will work to entice more foreign travelers and shoppers to our shores.
“The Obama Administration has made great strides in reducing visa wait times over the past year but more can be done to tap into the hundred billion dollar international tourism and travel market.
“Just as our retail customers won’t wait in line forever to make a purchase, foreign travelers won’t wait long to enter the United States. Our visa system needs to be secure, simple and expedient.”
As the world’s largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, NRF represents retailers of all types and sizes, including chain restaurants and industry partners, from the United States and more than 45 countries abroad. Retailers operate more than 3.6 million U.S. establishments that support one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.5 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s Retail Means Jobs campaign emphasizes the economic importance of retail and encourages policymakers to support a Jobs, Innovation and Consumer Value Agenda aimed at boosting economic growth and job creation. www.nrf.com