Two aviation lobby groups “The Aviation Foundation” and “A Fair Tax on Flying” getting themselves publicity…

The airline lobby group, called the Aviation Foundation (whose members are Virgin Atlantic,  BAA, British Airways’ parent company IAG, business groups and the TUC), is setting out a series of “tests” by which they believe the Government’s forthcoming aviation policy statement should be measured. They want a third runway at Heathrow, and presumably the”tests” will be attempting to show that this is economically beneficial. What these “tests” are has not yet been revealed.  Meanwhile the other airline lobby group, “A Fair Tax on Flying” are banging on again about APD, and making out that this tax is harming the UK economy, as it makes long haul holidays for those affluent enough to take them, more expensive.


Policy test from airline industry (The Aviation Foundation)

25.6.2012 (Press Association)

Airline and airport bosses are to unveil a series of tests by which they believe the Government’s forthcoming aviation policy statement should be measured.

Transport Secretary Justine Greening is due in the next few weeks to set out the Government’s thinking on aviation.

The last Labour government supported a third runway at Heathrow Airport, but this was ruled out by the coalition Government in May 2010, with ministers saying they had no plans for additional runways in south-east England.

But ministers have changed their minds, with Chancellor George Osborne saying in this year’s Budget that the country had to “confront” the lack of south-east England runway capacity.

Earlier this year Prime Minister David Cameron said the Government was “not blind” to the need for more runways. Last week he said the Government’s position on Heathrow had not changed, although there was a need to ensure Heathrow operated better.

The aviation “tests” are being unveiled in London by the Aviation Foundation, which includes Virgin Atlantic, Heathrow operator BAA, British Airways’ parent company IAG, business groups and the TUC.

IAG chief executive Willie Walsh will help outline the tests.

Keen to see expansion at British Airways’ main airport – Heathrow – Mr Walsh has been particularly critical of the Government, saying it has “no aviation policy to speak of” and that it has been “flying blind on aviation”.

London Mayor Boris also opposes a third runway at Heathrow, and backs a “Boris island” plan to build a new airport for London in the Thames Estuary.

Another Thames Estuary airport plan – a four-runway, £50 billion scheme – has been put forward by architect Lord Foster.


The Aviation Foundation’s website (which, sadly, contains a degree of misinformation and partial information, is at


and as well as that, the other airlines lobby group, “A Fair Tax on Flying” is banging on, yet again, about its dislike of Air Passenger Duty:


APD campaign fights for research into ‘damaging’ tax

25.6.2012 (TravelMole)

The Fair Tax on Flying campaign has hit back at MPs who claim Air Passenger Duty is helping to reduce Britain”s debt by asking for research into the damage it causes.
MPs have responded to some of the 2,500 letters against the tax by claiming it is important in reducing the nation”s deficit.
But Luke Polland, head of public affairs at ABTA said the very purpose of the campaign is to encourage the Treasury to research how damaging APD is.
He said: “We’re pleased with the initial progress. More than 2,500 people have contacted their MP which is a great start in just over four days. But there is still a long way to go, we want to reach all MPs up and down the country.
“We understand the points raised by some MPs about the structural budget deficit in their responses to constituents, however, the very purpose of the campaign is to encourage the Treasury to undertake research to establish just how damaging APD is.
“There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that APD costs the UK economy more than it raises – which is clearly bad for reducing the deficit.”
Since the launch of the Fair Tax on Flying group last week, more than 2,500 people have written to their MPs and 28 MPs have pledged their support.
Some MPs have replied to the campaign with a standard letter.
It said: “The Government inherited the highest structural budget deficit of any major economy in the world and the highest deficit in our peacetime history.
“APD makes an important contribution to reducing the nation”s deficit and this must be taken into account.
“Last year the Government launched a consultation on APD to improve the fairness and efficiency of the current system. Ministers recognise the importance of the aviation industry which is why the Budget in 2011 announced APD would be frozen for 2011-12 and the rise would take place this April instead.”
The Fair Tax on Flying campaign hopes to persuade 100,000 people to support its battle against APD by sending an email to register their protest.
The lobbying group, which comprises more than 30 airlines, airports, tour operators and trade bodies, has unveiled a new website – www.afairtaxonflying.orgsee previous story.
The Scottish Passenger Shipping Association has also reinforced its support urging all air travellers in Scotland – leisure of business – to get behind the campaign.
Although the Government seems committed to an increase in APD, it is considering regional variations on APD levels.!vnm&w_id=7973&news_id=2001975
A Fair Tax on Flying has a Facebook page, at and a website (asking people to complain to their MP) at