|View printer-friendly version|
|Government smokescreen on APD Devolution|
GOVERNMENT SMOKESCREEN ON APD DEVOLUTION
Government proposals to mitigate the damage to English airports of devolving APD to Scotland and Wales lack substance and credibility, says IAG. In its response to a Treasury discussion paper, the airline group is calling for APD to be scrapped across the UK.
In the paper, the Government admits that APD devolution will negatively impact English regional airports as passengers will rush across borders to avoid paying the highest aviation tax worldwide. Its proposed options are complex and unworkable.
IAG highlights that scrapping APD would boost the Britain’s economy, lifting GDP by 1.7 per cent and creating 60,000 new jobs by 2020, according to a study by PwC.
Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: “The Treasury has finally acknowledged that partial APD devolution will not work and these options are just a smokescreen. This is an exercise in futility. APD should be scrapped across the UK otherwise we end up with a domino effect at airports as passengers drive across the country seeking cheaper flights. The northern powerhouse will be seriously undermined as passengers flee northern airports.
“Scotland and Wales know that scrapping the tax on flying will boost their economy. How can it be fair for English travellers to carry on paying this tax. The idea that you can resolve this by allowing local authorities to raise their own mini-APDs is laughable. It is time to scrap this tax.”
Notes to editors: