Covid-19 updates

COVID-19 Update 38

Tuesday 12 May 2020

Dear AOA Member,

Today, the Chancellor announced an extension of the Job Retention Scheme (JRS) until October, with flexibility (including part-time furloughing) expected from August. Details on the flexibility and the higher contribution from employers is expected by the end of this month. One point that seems to be coming through (although not confirmed) is that, from August the payment rate from Government will fall to 60% with businesses required to make up the other 20%.

Following the Prime Minister’s statement on Sunday, the Department for Transport have today published new guidance for transport operators (press release here). Pending the aviation-specific measures, this also has relevance for airports. This sits alongside the overall COVID-19 Recovery Strategy, and guidance from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on safer workplaces today. The Transport Secretary has issued a letter to all transport operators on the transport guidance, a copy of which you can find here.

We have been continuing our conversations with DfT regarding quarantine rules and the detail of these, with a view to obtaining as much reassurance that the full measures will be used for as short a time as possible.

The Transport Secretary and Business Secretary also made statements in Parliament today, and we briefed a number of MPs in advance of those. It was good to see a number of MPs, including Shadow Transport Secretary Jim McMahon MP and former Prime Minister Theresa May MP, raising the challenges aviation is facing and the lack of Government support. We’ll be following up with MPs as opportunities arise.

Tomorrow, we have a conference call with the Transport Secretary – we will be asking him about the proposed quarantine measures and what support will be made available for the sector as a result. We will update members afterwards.

Best wishes

Karen Dee
Chief Executive