Delayed runway decision will see France and Germany beat UK economy – CBI
30 / 06 / 2016
UK company bosses group, the CBI, has warned of the economic consequences for Britain if the government continues to put off a decision on additional runway capacity in the South East of England.
Paul Drechsler, CBI president, said: “More than ever before, it is absolutely critical that the government sends a signal, loud and clear, that the UK is open for trade with markets across the globe.
“Building a new runway in the south east is a key decision for the long-term future of our economy and country, and will demonstrate to, and reassure, Britain’s workers, makers, exporters and investors that the UK is open for business.”
The CBI was adding to a growing chorus of criticism after Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin confirmed that an announcement would not be made until a new Conservative leader had been elected – October at the earliest – further delaying the long-awaited decision on a new runway at either Heathrow or Gatwick.
Drechsler continued: “The government has announced the decision will be delayed yet again, but kicking the can down the road is already having a real effect. Last year the CBI showed that delays to getting a decision on airport expansion by 2030 could see the UK lose out on over £30bn in lost trade with the BRIC economies alone.
“Our new analysis shows that our European rivals with spare capacity will be gaining at the UK’s expense, cashing in on their own thriving connectivity, if we fail to get on and build a new runway.”
He added: “By 2030, better capacity will see German trade with the BRIC economies alone grow by an additional £15bn, and French trade grow by £7.5bn – trade that could and should be coming here.
“We could still avoid this scenario, if the new Prime Minister makes a decision with a clear timetable for action immediately after entering Downing Street, so that construction can begin by 2020.”