It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mrs Riordan. I rise to draw attention to the evidence that we heard on the clause from Emma Gilthorpe of BAA and to give the Minister the opportunity to deal with it. She outlined in detail the purpose of the clause, but it sounded complicated to me, and that was the concern raised by Emma Gilthorpe. She said:
“My concern is that the way clause 5 is constructed is incredibly complicated and quite difficult to interpret”,
although maybe the Minister did well at interpreting it. None the less, that is the concern of people in the business.
Emma Gilthorpe gave an example, saying that,
“it is unclear to me whether, for instance, some of the rail assets, particularly Heathrow Express—a service that is very much prized by passengers using Heathrow as an integrated hub—would be in or outside of the regulatory construct. If it was not in, no business case would support private investment in Heathrow Express.”
“It is very important that we get these parameters clear and predictable”— the key word is “predictability”—
“so that future investments are not impaired.”––[Official Report, Civil Aviation Public Bill Committee, 21 February 2012; c. 8, Q6.]
Emma Gilthorpe felt that a simpler construction would best deliver that. I make that contribution just to give the Minister an opportunity to deal with those points raised in evidence to us.