The Secretary of State for Transport, the Rt Hon Justine Greening MP met with ABTA Members today to discuss her views on the challenges facing the travel industry and how she will address them. The Secretary of State’s visit to ABTA is one of the first she has made to an industry body since taking up her position as Transport Secretary last month. This is a unique opportunity for ABTA Members to express the industry’s concerns on the shape of ATOL reform, the need to bring airlines into a financial protection scheme, the shape and level of Air Passenger Duty and Government plans to address concerns on airport capacity throughout the UK.
Mark Tanzer, ABTA Chief Executive said: “The Secretary of State has already proved that she is a committed and engaged advocate for the transport sector and that she understands how vitally important the sector is in creating the right conditions for growth. She has hit the ground running at a crucial time for the industry and her willingness to meet with us today is the clearest indication that she is willing to listen to the industry’s concerns.
“We will continue to work to ensure she has a good understanding and takes action on our most pressing concerns, getting airlines to financially protect their customers and allowing the industry the space to grow and improve airport infrastructure. While the Treasury has responsibility for the reform of APD, the Transport Secretary was previously the minister responsible for this tax before the reshuffle and is in no doubt of our views. We will work with her as she could be an effective voice for the industry to the Treasury on the future shape and structure of APD.”
Justine Greening, Transport Minister said: “I was delighted to be able to meet today with ABTA and their members today to discuss their views on some of the issues affecting transport in the UK.
“I am keen to put the passenger at the heart of our aviation policy. We will continue to work with ABTA and other key stakeholders as we modernise the ATOL scheme and develop a sustainable aviation policy that supports economic growth while reflecting the environmental impacts of flying.”
The Transport Secretary spoke earlier in the year at ABTA’s political conference, Travel Matters, in her role as Economic Secretary to the Treasury where she had responsibility for the reform of APD.