Gatwick chairman says Gatwick could not get their money back on a 2nd runway if Heathrow builds a 3rd
Gatwick’s Chairman says it will not build a second runway if the British government allows a simultaneous expansion at Heathrow. Roy McNulty said building a Gatwick 2nd runway was a “bet the company type of investment” and the timescale of getting returns on the project would double if Heathrow was allowed to expand at the same time. He said Gatwick would also be wary if it was only allowed to expand sometime after Heathrow constructed a 3rd runway. Heathrow would remove the traffic Gatwick would need to run a new runway profitably. His comments were prompted by the leak, a week early, of the Airports Commission’s interim report and its shortlist of schemes for new runways – all of which appear to involve another runway at Heathrow. Gatwick, owned by GIP (who are likely to want to sell it before 2020) suggested in July that they could build a new runway for around £9 billion, rather than over £14 billion for one at Heathrow. lt could take a decade to build either – if they could indeed ever get planning permission and meet all social and environmental constraints.
Gatwick runway project won’t take off if Heathrow expands
Wed Dec 11, 2013
(Reuters) – Gatwick, London’s second largest airport, has warned it will not build a second runway if the British government allows a simultaneous expansion of its Ferrovial-owned rival Heathrow.
Gatwick’s Chairman Roy McNulty said building a second runway was a “bet the company type of investment” and the timescale of getting returns on the project would double if Heathrow was allowed to expand at the same time, the Financial Times said on its website. (link.reuters.com/mad45v)
McNulty added that his airport would also be wary if it was only allowed to expand sometime after Heathrow constructed a third runway.
His comments come a week before the UK Airports Commission is due to issue an interim report next Tuesday that is expected to have a shortlist of potential locations for new runways.
Business groups such as the Confederation of British Industry have said British airports need to add capacity for flights to fast-growing economies and could lose out to airport hubs such as Frankfurt and Amsterdam in attracting investment.
Gatwick, owned by Global Infrastructure Partners, in July outlined the cheapest and fastest solution to this problem by suggesting a second runway at its south London site that would cost only 9 billion pounds ($14.73 billion) and be up and running in just over a decade.
The cheapest option put forward for a third runway at Heathrow, the city’s biggest airport, would cost 14 billion pounds and be ready by 2025 at the earliest.
December 11, 2013
Gatwick chairman warns over Heathrow airport expansion
By Andrew Parker (Financial Times)
The FT says:
Sir Roy McNulty said:
“We do not think we would get our money back on the investment in a new runway for at least 15 to 20 years,” he said. The timescale would extend to 30 to 40 years if Heathrow was allowed to build a third runway at the same time, he added. “What businessman is going to make an investment of that nature?”
Sir Roy also claimed Heathrow’s push for more runways was undermined by the expansion of hubs in the Gulf. Dubai is set to overtake Heathrow as the largest airport by international passengers by 2015, primarily because it is home to Emirates Airline, the fast-growing long-haul carrier.
… about 30% of Heathrow’s passengers are using the hub to transfer from one flight to another – enabling airlines to fill up their aircraft and run profitable routes to long-haul destinations. Less than 10% of Gatwick’s passengers transfer between flights.