Survey finds overwhelming public support for APD reform

Four out of five people want to see Air Passenger Duty cut or frozen and want Chancellor George Osborne to act in his forthcoming autumn statement.

The results come from ComRes research of more than 2,000 people for UK airports showing that 82% of the public want changes to APD.

It demonstrates that the public’s tolerance of ever-increasing air taxes has come to an end, the Airport Operators Association claimed.

A separate study of 500 business leaders, undertaken on behalf of the AOA, reveals that 73% believe it is more important than ever that the government supports the aviation industry to help deliver its growth and jobs agenda.

They agreed it is crucial that the government backs growth in the UK’s point-to-point airports network and its hub capacity to help stimulate economic growth.

The research was carried out ahead of the AOA’s annual conference, which opens today (Monday) in London.

The conference will see the AOA launch its own overarching aviation policy, in response to the Government’s failure to do so.

The AOA’s ‘Integrated Framework for UK Aviation: Connecting the Economy for Jobs and Growth’ paper sets out 25 key recommendations to government which would boost aviation, and help bring about more jobs, business and economic growth to benefit the whole of UK plc.

AOA chairman Ed Anderson said: “Sadly, the government’s draft aviation policy framework is not an integrated aviation policy which will help boost our airports or the UK economy.

“We think this is a major error, and it is why we are launching our own policy document to hopefully focus the minds.

The government has to realise that the aviation industry plays a major role in resolving the ongoing problem of growing the economy – and so we have produced a bold and specifically cross-departmental integrated aviation policy to should what is possible.”

“Our ‘Integrated Framework’ unashamedly promotes the case for aviation and urges the government to do likewise, to ensure our sector can prosper for the ultimate benefit of the whole economy.

“The survey we commissioned to accompany our report clearly shows the support that the vast majority of business leaders and the public have for airports and aviation in general to help boost jobs, exports and inward investment, and to ensure flying remains affordable.”

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