UK airports response to Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee report on Tourism

Responding to the publication of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee report on Tourism, Darren Caplan, Chief Executive of the Airport Operators Association (AOA), the trade association representing UK airports, said:


  • “It is clear from this report that the whole tourism sector is united in believing that an across-the-board reduction in Air Passenger Duty (APD) would make the UK a more attractive destination for travellers and offer a welcome boost to visitor numbers. We’ve had two House of Commons Select Committees in as many weeks recognising this fact, and it is now time for this and any future Government to take heed of the recommendations, by setting out how they intend to ensure that no part of the UK is disadvantaged by the reduction of APD to Scotland and potentially Wales, when the Treasury’s review concludes later in the year.
  • “What cannot be allowed to happen is for Ministers to prevaricate and delay making a decision whilst at the same time our international rivals continue to steal a march on us by levying substantially lower levels of APD.
  • “We also welcome the Committee’s recommendation that the Government of the day should deliver a quick and decisive decision on the Airports Commission Final Report when it is published in the summer, and that all airports in the UK should be supported and allowed to expand if they wish to.
  • “The Committee rightly pointed out that tourism should be given greater recognition within Government but we would argue that the central role played by aviation in delivering a vibrant tourism sector is not properly understood either. This report is a good starting point in righting this wrong.”