AOA identifies APD, regional connectivity and air capacity as top priorities

AOA identifies APD, regional connectivity and air capacity as top priorities

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Cutting Air Passenger Duty across the whole of the UK is one of the top three priorities identified by members of the 50-strong Airport Operators Association.

The trade association also wants to see a regional air connectivity fund implemented to support new routes and the government to act on the recommendations of the imminent Airports Commission on airport capacity.

Almost a quarter of members said that cutting APD by 50% in line with Scottish government plans would lead to an increase in passenger numbers of 10-25% at their respective airports, while 55% said that it would lead to an increase of 5-10%.

Around 4% said that there would be no impact, 3% said that there would be an increase of more than 25%, while 14% said “none of the above”.

An AOA spokesman said: “It is clear that there is overwhelming support from across the airports sector for the government to take action to deal with the negative effects of APD.

“In particular, AOA members want the prime minister to honour the commitment he made during the recent general election campaign to ensure that in the event of Scotland reducing the tax by 50% no airport in the rest of the country would be adversely impacted.

“There is a strong belief that were this reduction to be matched across the UK it would make a positive contribution to growth in future passenger numbers.”

He added: “Members are also telling us that the government needs to respond as quickly as possible to the recommendations set out in the forthcoming final report of the Airports Commission, to ensure the UK has both the runway capacity it needs for the future as well as the ability to make the best use of existing capacity.

“And airports also want the government to get on with implementing the regional air connectivity fund, which provides start-up aid for the development of new air routes. Our members are clear that they bid for this funding in good faith and that ministers should ensure that it is invested as quickly as is practical.”


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