UK airports call for Air Passenger Duty reduction following Ryanair’s launch of eight new routes at Shannon Airport, Ireland

London, UK, 2013-10-30 — / — UK airports have again called on the Government to reduce levels of Air Passenger Duty, following the news that Ryanair is to introduce eight new routes at Shannon Airport in the Republic of Ireland, citing as a crucial reason for its decision the announcement from the Irish Government that it will scrap its air travel tax from April 2014.

 Darren Caplan, Chief Executive of the Airport Operators Association, the trade body for UK airports, said: “The decision by the Irish Government to scrap its aviation tax is already paying dividends, with Shannon Airport expected to increase its passenger growth by 15% because of this deal alone. This means more overseas visitors travelling to Ireland and more money making its way to the Department of Finance.

“Yet at a time when Ireland and so many of our European competitors are either abolishing or at the very least reducing their air taxes, the UK is putting up its own Air Passenger Duty to record levels. We now have the highest aviation tax in the world by some distance and as past economic studies have proven, this is costing us dearly in terms of attracting inward investment into the country and enabling our businesses to compete with overseas rivals. It’s time for a change of course on a tax that is causing huge damage to our competitiveness.”