Last Chance for UK Aviation?


In its response to the British Government’s Department for Transport’s consultation document Developing a sustainable framework for UK aviation, The Board of Airline Representatives in the UK (BAR UK) is explicit that the lack of a clear aviation policy is damaging to the UK and its economic recovery.
BAR UK, which represents 86 airlines, has warned that the consultation, which closes for submissions on October 20, is the last chance for the government to devise and implement the visionary aviation policy the UK needs to remain competitive internationally.
In its opening remarks BAR UK states that the lack of clarity is causing two primary impacts; imposing barriers on making firm and objective business decisions about future air services to the UK, and indicating to the rest of the world that key UK trading infrastructure is going to remain full for several years ahead.
The response also demonstrates the significant value of aviation to the UK economy, including the continuing importance of London, the crucial role of hub airports and their growing success abroad, as well as the economic value of transfer passengers and the commercial and operational importance of early morning and late evening flights.
BAR UK’s Chief Executive, Mike Carrivick, said: “The ditching of the previous administration’s aviation policy has effectively banned any new runways at the three largest London airports and set back the economic role of aviation by over ten years.
“The UK can only maintain one hub airport and for the foreseeable future that has to remain as Heathrow.  It’s our aim to show that whilst the UK dithers, other countries are grasping the economic opportunities offered by the lack of key hub airport capacity where it matters – London.”
“That’s the core issue that needs urgent action.  Anything else would simply be tackling the fringes and ignoring the key problem yet again.  If Heathrow expansion is off the menu, then what, where and when is the viable alternative, and who pays?”
Meanwhile, Frankfurt Main’s new runway opens on October 21.
The BAR UK full submission, including member survey results, can be downloaded at:
http://www.bar-uk.org/consultations/consultations.htm