Government ‘Kick The Can Down The Road For Another Year’ On Airports Expansion
Commenting on the official Government response to the Airports Commission’s Interim Report, Gavin Hayes, Director, Let Britain Fly, said:
“Instead of bold political leadership, the Government has decided to kick the can down the road for another year.
“We so desperately need a clear direction of travel and an in-principle commitment to build additional runways to boost our international connectivity and secure future jobs, growth and prosperity. Instead, we have yet more political procrastination.
“It is also regrettable that the Government have decided to release a statement on an issue of strategic national importance on the day of the reshuffle.
“When Patrick McLoughlin created the Airports Commission, he rightly pointed out that ‘the reality is that since the 1960s Britain has failed to keep pace with our international competitors in addressing long term aviation capacity and connectivity needs’, and emphasised the urgent need to put that right.
Sadly, the only consequence of today’s statement is that the UK will drop still further off the pace.”
Today’s official response is released over half a year after the Airports Commission published its report and only two days after over 50 business leaders from Britain’s top firms signed an open statement to the Government calling for an official response before the Parliamentary recess later this month and specifically calling on the Government to respond to the Commission’s view that at least one new runway is needed.
The business community will therefore be disappointed that the Government has chosen not to give the in-principle commitment to build new runway capacity that they were calling for.