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Chancellor ‘drunk on prosecco and pubs’, but no support for aviation, says BALPA

Responding to the Budget, Acting General Secretary Martin Chalk said:

“Once again British Aviation, and the many people who rely on the industry for a livelihood have been overlooked. This Budget needed to invest in the recovery of what was once the world’s third largest aviation industry and supported one and a half million UK jobs.

“The Chancellor seemed drunk on promoting prosecco and pubs, rather than on the sober need to support vital innovation and respite for airlines, who must weather a dark winter without a return of public confidence in flying.

“No investment in aviation skills, no investment in operational resilience and no support for our colleagues made redundant by the brutal pandemic.

“At a time when airlines have haemorrhaged money for 18 months, taken on mountains of debt and needed further investment from shareholders just to survive, this Government is again deaf to the reality of this highly competitive market.

“Whilst we welcome the reduction of domestic APD, the creation of a new band for longer haul flying makes no sense. It will now be much harder to capitalise on our recent free trade deals with countries such as Australia and New Zealand and it also unfairly penalises those who need to travel over 5,500km to see family. This flies in the face of the Government’s Global Britain agenda.

“With UK aviation only just being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel, this Budget provides no support for our once world leading aviation sector, and no recognition of the contribution we make to UK PLC.”