EasyJet CEO says UK should stay in the EU for low fares and airline benefits
Date added: 27 January, 2016
easyJet will campaign for Britain to stay in the European Union, with its chief executive telling consumers that membership encourages low cost travel between European cities. easyJet ‘s CEO, Carolyn McCall, said the EU was good for its business and its customers. “We will do everything we can to make sure that consumers understand that they are far better off within the EU when it comes to connectivity and low fares,” she said. Ms McCall is part of the pro-European lobby group, “Britain Stronger in Europe”, headed by former Marks & Spencer chief executive Stuart Rose. EasyJet would not be shy about its support. easyJet operates over 600 routes, most of which are in the EU. Ms McCall said: “We think it would be very difficult for our government to negotiate with 27 other member states to get the flying rights that we have today within the EU.” EasyJet has detailed contingency plans in place for if the UK votes to leave the EU, but they are not making these public. Ryanair has also urged Britain to stay in the EU. Though several large British businesses favour staying in the EU, often due to the benefits of tariff-less trade, many smaller firms feel the EU imposes what they argue are costly regulations. . Tweet
EasyJet CEO says UK should stay in the EU for low fares
Airline easyJet will campaign for Britain to stay in the European Union, with its chief executive telling consumers that membership encourages low cost travel between European cities.
Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged to renegotiate Britain’s ties with Europe and then allow voters a referendum on EU membership by the end of 2017.
Stepping into a highly charged political debate, easyJet said the EU was good for its business and its customers.
“We will do everything we can to make sure that consumers understand that they are far better off within the EU when it comes to connectivity and low fares,” easyJet’s chief executive Carolyn McCall said on Tuesday.
McCall is part of the pro-European lobby group, “Britain Stronger in Europe”, headed by former Marks & Spencer chief executive Stuart Rose. EasyJet would not be shy about its support, McCall said.
“We are very happy to talk in favour of Britain remaining in the EU,” she said in a conference call with financial analysts.
Rival budget airline Ryanair has also urged Britain to stay in the EU.
Several large British businesses have spoken out in favour of the EU, often due to the benefits of tariff-less trade. Many smaller firms have criticised the bloc for imposing what they argue are costly regulations.
easyJet operates over 600 routes, many of which are in the EU, with flights which connect London, Edinburgh and Bristol with European hubs such Paris, Geneva and Rome.
“We think it would be very difficult for our government to negotiate with 27 other member states to get the flying rights that we have today within the EU,” McCall said.
EasyJet has detailed contingency plans in place, however, should voters opt for Britain to leave the EU.
“We have a plan but it’s not a plan that we will discuss overtly,” she said.
Cheap flights under threat from Brexit, Remain campaign says
14.2.2016 (Politics Home)
Campaigners for Britain to remain in the EU have fired another volley of warnings about the consequences of Brexit, [Brexit means Britain’s exit from the European Union] including threats to holidaymakers’ safety, trade, and cheap air travel.
Those backing leaving the EU have dismissed the latest interventions as “scaremongering campaign of fear”.
Easyjet boss Dame Carolyn McCall claimed a vote to get Britain out of the EU could see the cost of air travel boom so much it would go back to the days when flying was “reserved for the elite”.
“As a result of Britain’s membership, the costs of flights have plummeted, while the range of destinations has soared,” she wrote in the Sunday Times.
She said: “How much you pay for your holiday really does depend on how much influence Britain has in Europe.
“That’s why easyJet believes the benefits far outweigh the frustrations — and why the UK is better off as part of the EU.”
The former boss of travel firm Tui, meanwhile, told the same newspaper that membership of the EU contributed to British holidaymakers’ safety.
Peter Long, who was in charge at the firm when 33 Britons were killed by a gunman in Tunisia, said the EU helped states to “work together in a crisis.”
He claimed the experience gave him: “Many first-hand experiences of seeing how European governments, through their foreign offices, collaborate and work together in a crisis.”
He added: “It would not be like that if we weren’t in a situation where we were as Europe working together.”
Conservative MP and former defence secretary Liam Fox dismissed the warnings: “Those that wish to remain in the EU should make the positive case for the supranational European project rather than frightening people.”
The claims have led to accusations of scaremongering from eurosceptics who think Cameron and his allies have started a campaign of fear to stop people from voting to leave the union.
Eurosceptic MP Liam Fox said: “Those that wish to remain in the EU should make the positive case for the supranational European project rather than frightening people.”
Ryanair boss urges Britain to remain in the EU
By Ben Martin (Telegraph) Michael O’Leary says there is “no doubt” the UK economy benefits from being an EU member state
The boss of Ryanair has urged Britain to remain inside the European Union because there is “no doubt” the UK economy benefits from being a member state.
Speaking as the Irish low-cost airline unveiled another surge in profits and revenues, Michael O’Leary said that Britain acted as an important moderating force on other European countries. “We are very actively supporting the campaign to keep the UK in the European Union. We need a reformed Europe and some sensible voices around the European table,” he said. “There is absolutely no doubt that the UK economy is better-off in Europe than outside.”
The Ryanair boss said he wanted to see reform of the 28-nation bloc because “some of the regulation that comes out of Brussels is frankly rubbish”. He would prefer “a lot less regulation” and in increase in the free movement of goods, capital and labour.
Brexit up in the air: implications for aviation if the UK votes to leave the European Union
22-Jan-2016 (CAPA – Centre for Aviation)
Opinion polls are notoriously volatile and unreliable predictors. Nevertheless, a recent opinion poll* in the UK has indicated that voters favouring a British exit from the European Union now number more than those favouring the status quo. Whether or not the poll is totally accurate, it indicates that a so-called “Brexit” is a serious possibility.
UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative government has promised UK citizens a referendum on this before the end of 2017. Meanwhile, he is attempting to renegotiate the UK’s membership, so that he can then back a campaign to stay in the EU. He is now hopeful of securing a deal with the UK’s European partners at EU summits in Feb-2016 or Mar-2016. This could pave the way for a referendum as soon as Jun-2016.
This report considers the possible implications of a Brexit on the aviation industry in the UK andEurope, with a particular focus on airline traffic rights. Much will depend on how, and to what extent, a post-EU Britain chooses to replicate its existing access to the EU single market in aviation (and in other sectors). Suffice it to say – the situation is uncertain.
*A poll conducted by Survation and published 17-Jan-2016 indicated that 42% of UK respondents were in favour of leaving the EU, 38% were in favour of remaining, and 21% were undecided.
The biggest source of benefits to UK aviation from EU membership is in the area of traffic rights and the nationality of airlines. Any airline owned and controlled by nationals of EU member states is free to operate anywhere within the EU without restrictions oncapacity, frequency or pricing.
The creation of the liberalised internal aviation market was one of the most important catalysts behind the rapid development of LCCs in Europe in the 1990s. Today, the extensive pan-European networks of Ryanair, easyJet, Vueling, Norwegian and others are built upon this free access.
Of course, Norway is not part of the European Union, but Norwegian Air Shuttle has equal access to the internal European market for air transport, thanks to the European Common Aviation Area (ECAA).