The expansion of Heathrow will benefit regional airports throughout the UK, and their businesses, according to the Aviation Minister, who urged the industry to make the case for the third runway.
Baroness Suggs used her keynote speech at the British-Irish airports expo to push forward the case for Heathrow expansion which, although has been approved by the government, is subject to approval in Parliament.
The two-day expo features more than 150 exhibitors from all aspects of the aviation sector, and in excess of 3,000 visitors are expected.
And the Aviation Minister spoke of the importance of the extra runway in terms of the space it would open up for other domestic flights as well as the rest of the world, giving greater trading options to businesses.
She said that other airports would benefit from expanding Heathrow, which currently has no spare runway capacity.
She said: “One of the key benefits from expanding Heathrow will be the increase in connectivity to the nations and regions of the UK – the importance of regional connectivity.
“I saw this in Inverness a couple of weeks ago where I discussed the potential for improving domestic routes with the airport and business leaders.
“Like other regional airports, Inverness wants a third runway at Heathrow to be built as soon as possible.”
With the runway expected to almost double Heathrow’s freight capacity and provide a boost of up to £74 billion to the wider economy, the Aviation Minister says it is crucial that businesses speak up and support the expansion.
She said: “I urge the industry to speak up in support. To make the case for expansion, and to help send out a message that Britain is open for business, and ready to embrace a global future after Brexit.”
Baroness Suggs also revealed in her speech that a new aviation strategy is being prepared to develop the best way of increasing capacity in the UK’s airports.