flybe warned that a proposed change to aviation taxes in the UK could “cripple” regional air services (Financial Informant, 21-Sep-2010). The coalition government is considering replacing the current per-passenger tax with a per-aircraft tax, which aims to penalise airlines that operate with half empty loads. flybe CEO, Jim French, stated that the new tax contradicts the government’s aim to cease development at major airports and allow regional airports to absorb the traffic growth. Mr French stated that regionals carry fewer passengers more often and would be disproportionately affected by a per-aircraft tax. The Treasury stated that “aviation tax ensures the activity of flying contributes its fair share towards the public finances, and plays a part in deficit reduction".
flybe: "This would have a detrimental effect on the development of regional services, which flies in the face of government policy to take pressure off demand for new runway capacity out of London." Jim French, CEO. Source: Financial Informant, 21-Sep-2010.