An independent assessment is being commissioned into the positive economic impact created by Gatwick at a local, regional and national level.
Consultancy firm Oxford Economics is to conduct the study to provide new and updated estimates of the value added and jobs created by Gatwick’s operations and supporting activity to map out where the benefits arise.
The move is being made by the airport’s newly-established Gatwick Growth Board under co-chairs, former London Olympics minister Tessa Jowell and transport minister Steve Norris.
The study is to report in November 2017 to help guide further growth of Gatwick.
It comes as the government prepares to make a decision on expanding airport capacity in the south-east, with a decision expected in October.
Jowell said: “Gatwick’s continued growth brings great opportunities for businesses in the region and nationally, and for employment and training at and around the airport but it also brings responsibilities on the airport to manage its impact on neighbours sensitively.
“We will assist Gatwick’s management team to address the wider issues associated with Gatwick’s recent and future growth.
“The airport is now recognised as one of the most important infrastructure assets in the country and its growth carries implications for the country as a whole, as well as for its local region.”
Norris added: “Gatwick’s growth from 32 million passengers in 2009/10 to 42 million this year and the much wider route network it now handles has broadened the nature of its economic impact to support business connectivity in and out of the UK.
“This first study will help to put this in perspective as the airport looks to the next phase of its growth so that the opportunities for training and employment as well as support for local and national businesses in the expanding supply chain can be best capitalised on.”
Airport chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “Gatwick has strong ambitions to develop over the coming decade. Six years after we came into independent ownership, Gatwick airport is now reaching the scale and scope to have much broader and positive impact on the UK economy.
“I look forward to seeing the work that the Gatwick Growth Board will do to help us plan for the future growth of the airport in a way that will maximise the benefits at a local, regional and national level while also ensuring that we continue to be a good neighbour to the communities around us.”
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