APD Further Increase

The UK Chancellor George Osborne announced today (November 29) in his Autumn Statement that Air Passenger Duty (APD) tax will increase to double the rate of inflation from April 1, 2012.
APD has been in place since November 2009 and is charged to all passengers taking outbound flights from the UK.
The news has caused uproar amongst various airlines with many claiming that the increase will further upset the national economy.  The Board of Airline Representatives in the UK (BAR UK) has stated that the move will be “devastating for the travel industry,” and has urged the Mr Osborne to rethink the decision.
“Air travellers are being milked yet again and used as a soft target to prop up Treasury coffers,” commented Mike Carrivick, Chief Executive of BAR UK.  “This announcement is completely at odds with the Chancellor’s wish to invest in the transport infrastructure.”
Carolyn McCall from easyJet, Willie Walsh from IAG, Michael O’Leary from Ryanair and Steve Ridgway from Virgin Atlantic have also released a joint statement condemning the decision:  “By increasing this tax by double the rate of inflation, [the Chancellor] is further deterring inbound tourism and foreign investment, and choking off yet more job opportunities for young people,” they said.
The statement continues:  “APD has no international parallel and has already cost the UK economy 25,000 jobs – this is what the Government should focus on.”
The government has also announced that APD will now be extended to flights taken aboard business jets, effective from April 1, 2013.  The tax has been cut since the start of this month, however, for passengers travelling on direct long-haul routes departing from airports in Northern Ireland.