Grayling makes Heathrow pledge

Ahead of the commons vote on Heathrow expansion, which the Transport Secretary has described as “the biggest transport decision in a generation”, Chris Grayling has made a five-point pledge.

Chris Grayling urged MPs to seize the opportunity of “targeting vital new overseas markets for British business and creating thousands of jobs”.

He promised any possible expansion would be governed by 5 key pledges:

  • that the airport will be expanded at no cost to taxpayers – it will be privately funded – and that the government will work with industry to keep airport charges down
  • expansion will provide new international routes, more than 100,000 new jobs across the country, doubled freight capacity and benefits of up to £74 billion to passengers and the wider economy
  • commitment to about 15% of new slots being used for domestic routes, alongside new rail links, providing new global opportunities for regional business
  • expansion to be delivered within existing climate change and air quality obligations and a new ban on scheduled night flights
  • Heathrow’s pledges to be legally enforceable, with punishment of unlimited fines or grounded planes if promises are broken

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “This is a momentous vote that has been 50 years in the making and represents the biggest transport decision in a generation.

“Successive governments have wrestled with the issue of Heathrow expansion but never before has Parliament held a vote on this project.

“At stake are thousands of new jobs and the country’s ability to compete on an international stage and win new global trade.

“We can be absolutely clear that this project will be privately financed and there will be no cost to taxpayers. And there will be cast iron legal protection to ensure the vital community and environmental measures are delivered.

“I hope colleagues from across the House will now put aside party and political differences to take a decision in the long-term national interest.”


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