Air Routes

Department for Transport written question – answered on 8th January 2019.

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Photo of Lord Forsyth of Drumlean Lord Forsyth of Drumlean Chair, Economic Affairs Committee, Chair, Finance Bill Sub-Committee

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Sugg on 20 December (HL12400), why the domestic services considered in the paper are limited to Heathrow; why services from London City Airport are not subject to review; and what assessment they have made of the distribution of landing slots between carriers.

Photo of Baroness Sugg Baroness Sugg Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

Heathrow Airport is mentioned specifically as there has been a fall in domestic air connectivity into Heathrow in recent years due to the lack of capacity. Expansion at Heathrow Airport will mean for the first time a significant number of additional slots being released at a severely congested airport in the UK.

The Government has also confirmed that it is supportive of all UK airports beyond Heathrow making best use of their existing runways, subject to proposals being assessed in light of environmental and economic impacts.

The current slot allocation process is set out in EU and UK legislation and is based on the guiding principles set out in IATA’s Worldwide Slot Guidelines. Slots in the UK are allocated by an independent co-ordinator so the Government does not complete assessments of the distribution of landing slots across UK airports. However, as I set out in my answer of 18 December, the Government is currently seeking views on reforming the process for allocating new slots through the Aviation Strategy Green Paper. The paper was published in December and the consultation closes on 11 April.

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