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Government must seal aviation deal ahead of Brexit, warn councillors
CONCERNED councillors in Luton are calling on the government to secure a new European aviation deal as a matter of urgency once Article 50 is triggered to begin the UK’s exit from the European Union.
Council chief executive Trevor Holden is to write to Prime Minister Thersa May, Transport secretary Chris Grayling and Brexit Secretary David Davies urging the government to take positive action to protect the interests of the UK aviation sector during Brexit.
Councillors approved the motion, proposed by leader Cllr Hazel Simmons. She said: “Through the Common European Aviation Area, airlines based in Luton have benefited from arrangements that allow an airline based in one EU country the freedom to operate in another EU country without impediment.
“The council notes with concern the impact that any changes to current arrangements could have and calls on the government to secure a new European aviation deal as quickly as possible following the invocation of Article 50, through a separate and distinct negotiation, to achieve the same rights as are in place presently.”
Airlines easyJet and Monarch, as well as global tourism business TUI, have either rtheir headquarters or significant operational bases in Luton. London Luton Airport is currently the UK’s fastest-growing, having expanded from 1.8 million passengers in 1995 to 14.5 million. Around 81 per cent of passengers travelling from Luton flew to an EU country during the peak holiday season July-September last year.
The airport plays a significant role in serving the London and South east region and contrinnutes an estimated £1.27 billion to the UK economy.
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