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UK tourism industry unites to call for fair tax on flying

3-Mar-2011 9:14 AM

UK's ABTA announced (3-Mar-2011) key names in the UK travel and tourism industry are uniting behind a campaign calling for a "Fair Tax on Flying" from the UK Government. The campaign aims to halt any further rises in aviation tax, with the group noting APD has increase 2600% since its 1994 launch and will this year give GBP2.2 billion to the Treasury. A survey conducted by ComRes for ABTA, revealed the following:

  • 63% of the British public believe the current level is too high, 21% say it is at about the right level, and  5% think it is too low;
  • three in four air passengers have no idea how much tax they’re paying;
  • consumers will look at alternative airports to fly from to lessen the impact of APD, and this is bound to have an effect on UK airlines. [more]

ABTA: "When it comes to the future of tourism in the UK, the Government’s words and deeds simply do not match up. The Prime Minister has identified tourism as one of the top five industries to drive growth, yet aviation tax has become a punitive stealth tax. It is vital that the Government understands the impact it is having on the health of the tourism industry in the UK. The industry is willing to pay its way, but a 26-fold increase since 1994 puts the UK at a competitive disadvantage when compared with our European neighbours and punishes UK holidaymakers and business travellers unfairly." Mark Tanzer, CEO. Source: Company Statement, 02-Mar-2011.

British Airways: "We recognise the exceptional difficulty of the country's fiscal position and we are content to pay our fair share. But the UK airline industry is already the most heavily taxed in the world and any further tax burden will be counterproductive to the country's economic recovery." Keith Williams, CEO. Source:  Company Statement, 02-Mar-2011.