Birmingham Airport responded to the consultation on the Government’s Draft Aviation Policy Framework on Wednesday 31st October. It has called on the Government to pursue a set of short-term aviation policies designed to make the best use of existing capacity at UK airports.
• Birmingham Airport has argued that aviation can boost UK manufacturing and rebalance the economy.
• Existing evidence shows that the Midlands has a competitive advantage within the UK economy for manufacturing exports.
• Businesses in the catchment area consider the lack of long-haul connectivity from the region to be restricting their growth.
Birmingham Airport has called on the Government to support the Midlands economy, by implementing four key policies:
1. Implement a differential tax regime at airports with spare capacity
2. Implement a congestion charge at congested airports
3. Create and market a network of national airports
4. Unilaterally liberalise air service arrangements from this network of national airports
These recommendations are proportionate to the current level of supply-side intervention in the market and would incentivise airlines to establish new routes from UK airports instead of moving to foreign hubs.
Paul Kehoe, Chief Executive of Birmingham Airport, said: “This submission is taking the Government for its word. If it is serious about making the best use of existing capacity at UK airports, it needs to balance capacity restrictions on airports in the South East with policies that encourage airlines to use other UK airports. This will help rebalance the economy away from a dependence on financial services and the South East as the sole engines of growth.
“Business leaders in the Midlands are calling out for greater long-haul connectivity from Birmingham Airport. They know that the economic fruit of aviation doesn’t fall far from the tree. It is time for the Government to branch out and pursue policies that unlock the potential of UK manufacturing.”
Birmingham Airport’s full submission can be found here