Edinburgh airport boss backs calls for Scottish APD cut

The chief executive of Edinburgh airport has endorsed efforts to cut or abolish Air Passenger Duty on all international routes from Scotland.

Gordon Dewar was speaking as the airport reported passenger numbers rose to almost 861,000 in November, up 8.3% on November last year.

A 20% rise in international passengers helped offset a decline in domestic travellers.

The airport handled more than 431,000 international passengers in November, while domestic numbers declined by 1% year-on-year to less than 429,800.

Dewar said: “We have a healthy equilibrium of inbound and outbound passengers with the most balanced mix of any UK airport outside London.

“This fact, which reinforces the strength and appeal of Edinburgh as a destination and the global draw of Scotland, gives us greater confidence as we look at the opportunities and challenges ahead.

“But there can be no room for complacency – and Edinburgh airport supports calls to abolish long-haul APD.

“We warmly welcome the recognition that international connectivity is a key driver for Scotland’s economy.

“We now look forward to the Scottish government publishing their plans and timetable which should back this position and also include the abolition – or substantial reduction – of APD on all international routes to and from Scotland, not just destinations over 2,000 miles.

“The greatest volume of our passengers fly to and from Europe – and it is a reduction of the tax on these European routes that will deliver a substantial increase in services and create jobs and economic prosperity here in Scotland.”

Meanwhile, passengers using Glasgow airport in November increased by 7.7% to 666,338, with international traffic up by 14.9% and domestic rising by 2.2%.