Covid-19 Update 8
Thursday 26 March 2020
Dear AOA Member,
Following the Chancellor’s letter on Tuesday, we have today responded outlining the reasons why we feel his decision not to provide a support package for aviation is unhelpful for airports (copy here). We’ve continued to make these points to the Department for Transport (DfT) as well, but no major shift appears likely this week.
Further alleviations have been announced: the CAA has issued easements for Rescue & Fire Fighting Staff (RFFS), which you can read here. DfT have also sent out FAQs on key workers in the transport sector, which you can read here. We have gathered all this information together on the public part of our website, along with the general measures for business that have been announced. You can find the page here, including a link through to the members-only section of the website where you can see copies of all correspondence we have had with Government and previous editions of this Update.
The Government has also announced it will issue further details this evening on the Jobs Retention Scheme, which will see HMRC cover 80% of employees wages up to a maximum of £2,500. We had hoped to send you the details, but it hasn’t been published yet. It is due to be published here. HMRC have opened a dedicated helpline for businesses and the self-employed (0800 024 1222) to answer queries or concerns regarding tax payments and finding solutions. Meanwhile, the Scottish Government has taken steps to consider a business rates holiday for businesses, including airports.
Lastly, we had a call with DfT Ministers to discuss the impacts on all modes of freight transport, including aviation. This was an opportunity for a number of aviation representatives, including ground handlers and fast-parcel operators, to reiterate our points on the action needed from government.
On a completely different note, one of the challenges that many families across the UK are facing is home schooling. AOA Member Osprey Consulting Services have just launched Osprey KIDS: a dedicated website providing aviation-based and STEM-based home learning, activities and resources for parents with children in pre-school and primary school.