SPAA urges political clarity on APD in election manifestos

SPAA urges political clarity on APD in election manifestos

Political parties are being urged to provide "crystal clarity" on their positions over Air Passenger Duty in the run-in to the general election.

The call comes from the Scottish Passenger Agents' Association which wants to see the issue addressed by political parties in their election manifestos.

SPAA president Jimmy Martin said: “Voters, a large proportion of whom will be travelling by air - for business or leisure - during the new government's term, deserve crystal clarity on APD when they are making a decision on where to place their cross in the polling booth."

He added: "The recent report commissioned by Edinburgh airport makes it crystal clear that the Scottish government's commitment to halving the level of APD, once it's devolved to Holyrood, means minimum £200 million in economic benefits and the creation of 3,800 jobs here.

“We are calling on the Scottish government to clarify, as soon as it is able to do so, the mechanism and timetable for bringing this vital boost for travellers and our economy to fruition, and we will be meeting with the minister for transport in early April for discussions on this subject.

“But we are going further, given the realities of the situation in the wake of the Smith Commission agreement [on Scottish devolution].

“We are calling on each of the main UK political parties to clarify in its manifesto, precisely what its intentions are for APD, should it form the incoming UK government.

“We firmly believe APD should be abolished - a view supported by many business organisations and many weighty reports - but if that is not to be party policy, we are seeking a commitment from each party that the process of devolution of APD to Holyrood will begin on day one of the new government's term of office.”

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