Mayor of London Guest of Honour at Asian Curry Awards

 17th November 2019



Sadiq Khan: Government has made it difficult to recruit the chefs we need


Sadiq Khan, the Labour Mayor of London, is addressing the annual Asian Curry Awards taking place on Sunday 17th November at the Grosvenor House Hotel. He will praise the contribution of the industry, as well as British Asians to London and the UK. He will also attack the Tory Government’s ‘wrongheaded’ approach to immigration which is making it difficult to recruit the chefs and skilled workers businesses need, and he will call for a migration system that is flexible enough to ensure we can fill key jobs in our food and hospitality sectors.


On the Asian Curry Awards, Sadiq Khan is expected to say:


“I’m delighted to be here at the Asian Curry Awards celebrating all the amazing businesses and restaurants that have been nominated for an award this evening.


“I have the best job in the world because I get to represent the greatest city on earth. A city that is defined by its incredible diversity, energy, entrepreneurship and wealth of opportunities.


“By bringing the best of Asian culinary traditions to these shores, these restaurant owners have expanded not only the choice of food available to the British public, but our very identity as an open, inclusive and multicultural nation.


“They help to show that our diversity makes us stronger as a society, not weaker. That it makes us richer, not poorer. And that our diversity isn’t the cause of our problems – as some try to make out right now – but rather, it’s a source of pride, progress and prosperity for all.”


On the contribution of the British Asians, he is expected to say:


“The triumph of the British curry industry is indicative of the massive contribution British Asians have made – and continue to make – to our cities, our towns and our villages.


“And its achievements are part of a much bigger success story – about the role of amazing Asian businesses, which number in the tens of thousands and – together – fuel growth and generate over £60 billion for our economy.


“These companies employ thousands of workers across our country, brighten our high streets, improve the quality of life in our neighbourhoods and enrich our society and culture.


On the impact of the current immigration system on the industry, he is expected to say:


“Unfortunately, however, I believe our Government doesn’t always fully appreciate all the benefits that businesses like these deliver for our society.


“If they did, they wouldn’t have adopted such a wrongheaded approach to immigration that has made it so difficult for businesses to recruit the chefs and skilled workers they urgently need.


“That’s why I’m calling on the Government to put in place – as a matter of priority – a migration system that is flexible enough to ensure we can fill key jobs in our food and hospitality sectors. Because the last thing we should be doing is clipping the wings of businesses like these, which deserve our backing and support.


“I’m here to get the message out there that London is – and always will be – open. Open to food, talent and influences from around the world. Open to people of all faiths, customs and cultures. And open to brilliant businesses like the ones here tonight.”


Around 700 VIP guests are expected to attended a glittering gala dinner at the Grosvenor House in London on Sunday 17th November, to honour the winners of the 19th Asian Curry Awards, organised by the Asian Catering Federation (ACF).


These are the nation’s only accolades dedicated to the entire spectrum of pan-Asian cuisines, rewarding the best curry restaurants and takeaways. Winning an Asian Curry Award is widely regarded in the community as the ultimate achievement for a restaurateur or chef.