Responding to the announcement in the Budget that long-haul Air Passenger Duty rates will rise with inflation from 2020, Tim Alderslade, Chief Executive of Airlines UK, said:
“Today’s announcement sends entirely the wrong signal as we prepare to leave the European Union. APD is nothing but a tax on Global Britain. Rates are already the highest in the world, with the burden on passengers travelling from and within the UK having risen over 1000% since its introduction, and set to hit an eye watering £4bn by 2022/3.
The UK was only country in Europe to see a loss of direct connectivity last year, and today’s increase on business and holiday travellers will make it even harder for UK airlines to grow our international connectivity, establish new trade links and encourage more tourists to visit the UK. With Brexit just around the corner, it is a missed opportunity to have truly transformed the UK’s international competitiveness.
Ministers can talk all they like about reaching out to the world but today’s increase demonstrates that their words are not matched by their actions and will remain so until they get rid of this damaging tax”.