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25 OCTOBER 2021

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Article from BTNews 25 OCTOBER 2021

UK Airport Conference

The AOA (Airport Operators Association) held its annual conference last week, a totally video affair. 

Robert Courts, Minister for Aviation made an appearance insisting that the Government was behind the industry.  

He said “I would like to see more working together. We will fight the corner for aviation.”

AOA Chief Executive Karen Dee was not that impressed.  “Despite the recent welcome changes we still have a complicated system.

“The Government has some way to go to set out a pathway to getting back to international travel with no restrictions.”

She noted: “Other countries took a more pragmatic view and have seen passenger numbers recover more quickly. That has meant airlines moving fleets to where they can make more use of them.

“Europe’s restart has largely been driven by a more pragmatic approach to intra-European travel. Double vaccinated passengers no longer need to do any testing.

“Despite great progress on vaccines in the UK we didn’t see the kind of recovery we were hoping for.

“We’re seeing some boost in demand for the autumn and removal of the day two PCR test will instil more confidence. But we do not see this as job done.”

And Dee pointed out “The Government can’t ignore the fact that we’ve had 20 months with no income. Furlough was welcome and we’ve had business rates support, but both have come to an end and we’re in the loss-making season.

“We’re not yet in recovery mode. We need a clear plan from Government, a recovery plan to provide a supportive environment through policy and fiscal measures."

For a full report read here

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