At the opening of the Airport Operators Association’s (AOA) Annual Conference on Monday 29 October, 2018 Karen Dee, AOA’s CEO called on the Chancellor to seize the opportunity to cut Air Passenger Duty (APD) and prepare the UK for Brexit.

“The UK aviation industry is working hard to deliver the services passengers want. But, we’re being hampered in our efforts by the anti-competitive Air Passenger Duty,” she said.

“The Government should take urgent action in today’s Budget to ensure the UK has the direct aviation connectivity needed for our economy and our ambition to be a Global Britain.

“Cutting Air Passenger Duty in half to match Germany’s tax is one of the quickest ways to boost connectivity growth.”

With airports across the country coming together to prepare for the future of UK aviation and ensuring the UK is Brexit-ready, the association urged the Chancellor to cut APD by 50% so that UK airports can compete on a level playing field with their European neighbours.

It also urged the Government to ensure that Border Force has the necessary resources to deliver a secure but welcoming border, with dramatically shorter queues.

Dee also underlined that the Government’s aviation Strategy is a “prime opportunity to take further action to provide aviation with a licence to grow, sustainably. It should provide a framework that enables all UK airports, airlines and Border Force to have the capacity to meet the growing demands of consumers and businesses alike.”

During his keynote speech, the UK’s Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling, reassured delegates that Brexit negotiations in terms of aviation are “well on their way” and he was confident that planes would not be grounded in the situation of a no-deal Brexit.

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