Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

New air rage for region’s businesses

A NATIONAL business organisation has voiced its concerns over the rise in air passenger duty (APD) which could cost the regions business commuters as much as £170 per flight.

With the Government proposed plans coming in to force yesterday, the CBI has expressed its apprehension over the move, which could prevent companies in the region forging ties with the global business community.

Neil Bentley, CBI Director for Business Environment, said: “ This could discourage foreign visitors coming to the UK as the tax affects them when they leave the country, hitting British tourism and trade.“

Since 2007, APD has increased by 213% for the longest flights departing from UK airports.

In 2009/10 the Government raised £1.9bn from the tax and the yield from this tax will rise to £3.5bn by 2014-15.

The organisation has urged the Government to find ways of supporting the UK aviation sector, rather than damaging its competitiveness.

“The Government needs to consider what impact such taxes will have on the aviation industry’s competitiveness in what is a truly global market,” added Mr Bentley.

There is concerns that taxing foreign passengers in this way may lead to North East terminals being abandoned in favour of Dutch, Belgian or other international hubs- where the taxation laws do not apply-, which could damage the regions economic standing.

It is yet another blow for the aviation sector.

This year alone it has to contend with the volcanic ash cloud, which closed European airspace for several weeks, and the global recession, resulting in a 7% drop in UK passenger levels.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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