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Aviation: Coronavirus

Department for Transport written question – answered on 11th May 2020.

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Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard Conservative, Blackpool North and Cleveleys

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential effect that the proposal to impose a 14-day quarantine on inbound passengers will have on demand for air travel in and out of the UK.

Photo of Kelly Tolhurst Kelly Tolhurst Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The aviation sector plays a key role in our future as a global trading nation, as well as playing a critical role in local economies. However, it is important that we actively manage the risk of imported cases of coronavirus being introduced to the UK from overseas. The Prime Minister set out in his speech on Sunday the need to ensure that we do not import new cases of Covid-19 as the UK’s R rate continues to decline. These measures, which we will be introducing later in the month as part of the Government’s overall efforts, will help keep transmission in the UK as low as possible. Further detail will be set out in due course.

The challenges businesses are currently already facing are significant. This is particularly the case for the aviation sector, which has seen significant drops in demand over recent weeks. The Government is keen to see the sector return to normal operations as soon as possible so that it can support the UK economy in bouncing back from the impact of COVID-19.

The Government continues to support businesses through one of the most generous economic packages provided anywhere in the world.

In time, the aviation sector will begin to restart and recover, and we are exploring measures that could be deployed in the aviation sector to ensure the public can be confident that flying is a safe and healthy way of travelling. Any changed to our approach will be led by advice from SAGE and the Chief Medical Officer.

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