7 OCTOBER 2013


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Article from BTNews 7 OCTOBER 2013

CAA and airport charges

Britain's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is recommending capping the prices charged by Heathrow to its airline clients, drawing a furious response from the country's busiest airport which warned of a long-term hit to investment.  They will not rise more than inflation.

Heathrow, whose owners include Spain's Ferrovial and the sovereign wealth funds of Qatar, China and Singapore, had submitted a plan to the CAA seeking to raise tariffs for airlines by 4.6% above inflation.

"Tackling the upward drift in Heathrow's prices is essential to safeguard its globally competitive position", CAA Chairman Deirdre Hutton said in a statement.

"The CAA's proposals risk not only Heathrow's competitive position but the attractiveness of the UK as a centre for international investment", Heathrow retorted. 

The announcement by the CAA seems to have upset everyone with Dale Keller, Chief Executive of BAR UK, the airline representative body, summing up for the industry: “Airline CEO’s will be reaching for their oxygen masks in the knowledge that they will be forced to pass on excessive airport charges to their customers for the next five years”.

The actual airport charges are disguised by most airlines lumping all costs together as ‘tax’ but this often includes APD.  Currently the Heathrow fee is £25 per departing passenger and Gatwick £8. www.caa.co.uk

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