Ireland and the UK’s largest airlines have united to call on the UK Government to scrap Air Passenger Duty (APD), saying the tax’s negative impact on the economy outweighs any benefit from the revenue raised (Reuters/Dow Jones Newswires/RTE Online/International Business Times, 17-Nov-2011). CEOs from IAG, Virgin Atlantic, Ryanair and easyJet sent an open letter to UK Finance Minister George Osborne regarding the tax. The airlines claim UK aviation trends are mirroring those seen in the Netherlands in 2008/09 when a similar air tax was imposed. The Dutch levy was abandoned after a year following a study which showed the harmful effects on the Dutch economy were nearly four times greater than the revenue it produced.
IAG: “How often do you see four bitter rivals who are often abusive to one another come together like this? This is how serious we are to see APD scrapped,” Willie Walsh, CEO. Source: RTE Online, 17-Nov-2011.