Ryanair today called on the UK Government to scrap Air Passenger Duty (APD) for all customers in order to stimulate job and tourism growth, ahead of the removal of the travel tax for all under-16 customers from tomorrow.
Ryanair urged Chancellor George Osborne to follow the example of the Irish Government, which abolished APD in April 2014, and as a direct result sparked a major boost in passenger numbers at all Irish airports in 2015, which was a year of record growth for Irish tourism, with traffic rising by 3.3m to 29.8m annual customers. Indeed, 70% of this growth was delivered by Ryanair (an extra 2.2m customers) adding more routes and flights, while bringing more high spending tourists to Ireland.
An independent Pricewaterhouse Coopers study has offered compelling evidence of the damage caused by APD in the UK and confirmed that:
– The abolition of APD would yield 0.46% of the UK GDP in the first year and at least £16bn within 3 years;
– New flights and 60,000 new jobs would be created;
– APD is one of the 3 most destructive taxes, alongside Corporation Tax and Fuel Duty;
– Aviation is an engine of economic growth for international commerce and tourism;
– Ryanair again called on the UK Government to ‘axe the tax’ for all and allow UK airports to become competitive once more, while stimulating jobs and tourism growth.
Ryanair’s Robin Kiely said:
“The continuous growth and success of Irish tourism since the total removal of APD, which is being driven by Ryanair, offers compelling evidence for Chancellor Osborne to take the same course in the UK. While we acknowledge that the removal of APD for under- 12s, and under-16s (from tomorrow), is a step in the right direction, we are again calling on the Government to scrap this damaging tax for all in order to promote economic, jobs and tourism growth.”