The recognition by the Airports Commission that additional airport capacity is needed in the south east of England is an important step in the right direction, the Freight Transport Association has said.
Sir Howard Davies, the Commission’s Chairman, acknowledged that Britain will need new runways in a speech at Centre for London yesterday (7 October). The Airports Commission was created last year to consider airport capacity in south-east England and how to maintain the UK’s position as a hub for international air traffic.
In his speech Sir Howard said that the Commission’s provisional conclusion was that "we will need some net additional runway capacity in the south east of England in the coming decades" and that "an attempt to rely only on runways currently in operation would be likely to produce a distinctly sub-optimal solution for passengers, connectivity and the economy."
Chris Welsh, FTA’s General Manager – Global and European Policy said:
"The recognition of the need for additional runway capacity in the south east of England is an important step in the right direction. The freight industry believes additional capacity is urgently needed to improve connectivity and to maintain the competitiveness of UK importers and exporters who depend on a wide range of air freight services to remain competitive in global markets."
Sir Howard said that the Commission is on track to publish its final report, with clear recommendations, in the summer of 2015.