Treasury give Scotland second class ticket

As a Treasury cut to the rate of Air Passenger Duty (APD) for passengers departing from airports in Northern Ireland, the SNP has called for equality of treatment from the UK Government for passengers flying from Scotland.

From 1 November the rate of APD for direct long-haul passengers flying from Northern Ireland has been cut to the short-haul rate - which is currently £12 in economy and £24 in business and first class. The UK Government is also in the process of devolving aspects of APD to the Northern Ireland Assembly.

SNP Westminster Transport spokesperson Angus MacNeil MP said:

“This is good news for Northern Ireland, but Scotland deserve equality of treatment from the Treasury. People in Scotland should not be treated like second class passengers by the UK Government.

“There is overwhelming evidence for the devolution of APD with all four of Scotland’s largest airports backing the call and Transport Scotland saying there is no good reason why passengers in Scotland should have to continue to travel in such numbers through other UK airports or should not benefit from levels of connectivity enjoyed in other parts of the UK.

“Devolution of APD would enable us to incentivise airlines to provide new direct international routes, providing Scotland's passengers with enhanced options as they go about their business more freely and more effectively.  It would also provide a substantial boost to the Scottish economy and create jobs.

“It is time for the UK Government to stop being hypocritical and allow Scotland to have control over flight taxes, just like Northern Ireland.”