Chris Grayling, the Secretary of State for Transport, has confirmed that the Government will support the building of a third runway at Heathrow Airport. The proposal had been approved by the Labour Government in 2009, with a planned opening date of 2015, but it was cancelled by the then incoming Conservative Government led by David Cameron.
The Department for Transport said in a statement:
“Heathrow will be privately financed and costs will not fall on the taxpayer. To make sure expansion is delivered with consumers’ interests at heart, the government has asked the Civil Aviation Authority to ensure the scheme remains affordable while meeting the needs of passengers.
A new runway at Heathrow would provide benefits of up to £74 billion to passengers and the wider economy and create tens of thousands of local jobs. It will better connect the UK to the rest of world with an extra 16 million long-haul seats available by 2040.
Heathrow is already the UK’s biggest airport for passengers and freight and the north-west runway will almost double the airport’s capacity for goods, allowing businesses across the country to increase their exports and take advantage of new global customers”.
Chris Grayling added:
“Expansion at Heathrow presents a unique opportunity to deliver a multi-billion pound boost to our economy, strengthen our global links and maintain our position as a world leader in aviation.
As we leave the EU, the UK must remain one of the world’s best-connected and outward-looking countries and a third runway at Heathrow is the best option to deliver this.
We have listened to views through our consultations and will ensure a world-class package of measures to help any local communities affected by the expansion”.