13 OCTOBER 2014
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During the recent UK Conservative Party Conference, the CEOs of Birmingham and Gatwick airports stood side by side and announced that Birmingham is backing Gatwick’s expansion plans.
Speaking after the fringe event, Birmingham Airport CEO Paul Kehoe said: "Passengers and businesses tell us they want to fly direct. With our region attracting over a quarter of the UK's foreign direct investment, we are clear that the answer is a network of national long-haul airports, plugging all regions into global growth opportunities. Growth at Gatwick will support demand for greater connectivity, improving value for passengers flying from the South East and supporting the continued growth of our regions."
Stewart Wingate, Gatwick CEO, added: "Competition between the UK's airports is essential for delivering choice for passengers, businesses and investors across the country. By expanding Gatwick we can harness the strength of the country's network of great airports, delivering new South East capacity and supporting the growth of connectivity across the UK. This is why we are delighted that Birmingham Airport is supporting our case for a second runway."
Meanwhile, the Airport Operators Association responded to a vote at the Liberal Democrat Party Conference to rule out airport expansion by saying: “Aviation is crucial to UK Plc, supporting one million jobs, £50 billion in GDP and £8 billion in Treasury revenues, and the party’s position fails to realise the economic and connectivity benefits a growing aviation sector can deliver, nor the enormous strides the industry is taking to deal with its carbon and noise impacts.” www.gatwickairport.com
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