Theresa May must put national interest ahead of constituency concerns on runway expansion

concerns as new survey shows strong business support

 

Wednesday 13 July 2016

Theresa May must put national interest ahead of constituency concerns as new survey shows strong business support for runway expansion

- 35% favour Heathrow 
- 27% favour Gatwick 
- 15% favour both 

New Prime Minister, Theresa May has been urged to deal quickly and effectively with the repeatedly delayed decision on airport expansion in the UK.

London Chamber of Commerce and Industry made the call as a new survey showed more than three quarters (77%) of London business leaders support expansion of the capital's aviation.

Chief Executive of London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Colin Stanbridge said:

"Clearly Mrs May will have a brimming in-tray, but this will be one of the most important decision to be made during her premiership and we hope one of the first.

"Some people in Maidenhead may have local concerns about night-time noise but Heathrow Airport expansion will bring huge benefits to the national economy.

"The economic benefits of air-links have been well documented, so every day of delay means missed opportunities to boost employment and productivity in London and the wider UK."

The ComRes polling of over 500 businesses found that 35% would like to see a new runway at Heathrow while 27% preferred Gatwick. Interestingly,15% believe both airports should have new runways.

The Airports Commission initially shortlisted the two sites as suitable sites for one new additional runway and then recommended Heathrow in its final report in July 2015.

However despite calls from business, the Government has not yet decided whether to endorse the report.

LCCI believes that, to future-proof the UK economy, new runways should be built at both Heathrow and Gatwick, albeit in a staggered approach, with Heathrow first as it is already operating successfully as a hub airport with numerous international airlines. 

ENDS

Media contact
Katharine McGee
T: +44 (0)20 7203 1897                     
M: +44 (0)7827 241528
E: kmcgee@londonchamber.co.uk

NOTES TO EDITOR:
1. London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) is the capital's largest and most representative business organisation, with members ranging in size from multi-national companies to SMEs and sole traders.
2. Colin Stanbridge, chief executive is available for further comment and interview.
3. ComRes interviewed 508 London business decision makers online between 16th May and 6th June 2016.
4. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.