National Infrastructure Strategy – nothing about airports, or expanding the sector; mainly support for SAF and airspace change
The Government has produced its National Infrastructure Strategy, and aim of which is to upgrade infrastructure (transport, roads, railways, internet and more) to better link the country and level-up the regions. There is very little about aviation, and nothing at all about expanding airports or growing the sector. Some of the comments are: “£21 million will also be provided for the decarbonisation of aviation, through supporting sustainable aviation fuels and zero emission flight infrastructure. This work will be overseen by the recently established Jet Zero Council, a partnership between government and industry to drive the delivery of new technologies and innovative ways to cut aviation emissions.” Then there is more about development of Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF). “The government will also consult on introducing a SAF mandate.” Also the government is “committed to modernising UK airspace, which will deliver quicker, quieter and cleaner journeys and more capacity for the benefit of those who use and are affected by UK airspace.” And a Global Travel Taskforce to consider how the international travel sector could be supported through the specific challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
National Infrastructure Strategy
“Fairer, faster, greener”
By the Treasury
Presented to Parliament by the Chancellor of the Exchequer by Command of Her Majesty
Its introduction, by Boris Johnson – the Prime Minister – says:
Fairer, faster, greener
“For decade after decade, governments of every political stripe have failed to invest enough in the UK’s regions and nations. It is one of the reasons why the quality of our national infrastructure has fallen behind that of other countries. This Strategy will change that.
“In almost my first words as Prime Minister, I promised to unite our country by physically and literally renewing the ties that bind us together. I promised to unleash the productive power not just of London and the South East, but of every corner of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. I want to bring hope and opportunity for each part of the UK. Levelling up is my government’s core purpose.
… and it goes on …
These are the only mentions of aviation:
“£21 million will also be provided for the decarbonisation of aviation, through supporting
sustainable aviation fuels and zero emission flight infrastructure. This work will be overseen by the recently established Jet Zero Council, a partnership between government and industry to drive the delivery of new technologies and innovative ways to cut aviation
“This will fund a one-year competition to support the development of a Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) Demonstration and first-of-a-kind commercial plants. This funding will also kickstart the establishment of a clearing house for SAF, the first of its kind in Europe, to certify new fuels and develop UK expertise. The government will also consult on introducing a SAF mandate.
“Funding for the Aerospace Technology Institute, which provides match-funding to stimulate the development of innovative and more efficient aircraft technologies, has also been extended.
“The UK’s airspace is an essential, but invisible, part of its national transport infrastructure. The government is therefore committed to modernising UK airspace, which will deliver quicker, quieter and cleaner journeys and more capacity for the benefit of those who use
and are affected by UK airspace.
“The government will continue to co-sponsor the airspace modernisation programme with the Civil Aviation Authority. This will ensure that carbon savings for aviation can be realised
though proven technology this decade.”
“Within infrastructure, the transport sector has been the most heavily impacted, with dramatic falls in demand across many modes. Over the period, the government has responded with a series of targeted aid packages:
• The government is supporting the aerospace sector and its aviation customers with over £9 billion support through the Bank of England’s COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility, grants for research and development, loan guarantees and support for aerospace exports. In addition, the government has provided £5.7 million funding to air passenger services between Great Britain and Northern Ireland to ensure those who needed to travel
could continue to do so;”
“International connectivity is important for linking businesses to valuable markets, and to support trade and investment.21 The UK has the third largest aviation network in the world. Flights into UK hub airports connect the regions and nations of the UK to the world, enabling a more global Britain. Air connectivity also brings together the nations of the UK, and in 2019 over 19 million passengers flew on routes between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.22
“The government last month launched the Global Travel Taskforce to consider how the international travel sector could be supported through the specific challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. It has since considered what steps we can take to facilitate business and tourist travel on a bilateral and global basis, through innovative testing models and other
non-testing means, and more broadly what steps we can take to increase consumer confidence and reduce the barriers to a safe and sustainable recovery of international travel.
“This is alongside the already unprecedented package of measures announced by the Chancellor and available to the travel sector, including schemes to raise capital, flexibilities with tax bills and the extended furlough scheme.”