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Airports Commission Interim Report

17 December 2013

Responding to the publication of The Airports Commission Interim Report, Saad Hammad, Flybe's Chief Executive said: "Aviation policy should serve the needs of the whole economy and all regions. Extra investment in capacity around London should be for the whole country, not just for London. The government should mandate reserved slots in London airports to serve the regions at an affordable cost so that the regions too can benefit from hub connections to London and onwards to the rest of the world.

"In our submission to the Commission, we pointed out that only six UK cities (Aberdeen, Belfast, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester and Newcastle) currently have access to Heathrow, compared to 20 regional UK cities in 1990. We are disappointed that Sir Howard seems not to have addressed the crucial issue of regional connectivity to any new national hub near the capital."

Mr Hammad concluded: "Aviation policy must serve all of the UK, not just London. Regions have poor access to London airports, being crowded out by more profitable international flights. We risk having a London hub only for the South East of England and transiting international passengers, with people outside London increasingly having to use Dublin, Paris and Amsterdam as their hub to access the rest of the world."