Heathrow Airport has set out a series of pledges for how expansion would deliver jobs, skills and economic growth for its local communities and the whole of the UK.
The five promises, set out in a new report entitled “The Promise of Heathrow,” form part of a larger plan to deliver more than 120,000 new jobs and £100 billion in economic benefits by connecting the UK to global growth.
Heathrow is one of the UK’s largest single-site employers. They say expanding Heathrow would lead to increased opportunities and training, particularly for local young people. In its new report, Heathrow promises that its expansion will double the number of apprenticeships across the airport to 10,000 by 2030 and support wider programmes to champion employability skills training in schools.
Approximately 300 apprenticeships are currently started each year across the airport. This number would double with the opportunities an expanded Heathrow would bring. The Airport say this would mean 3,000 apprenticeships in the lead up to construction, a further 3,000 during construction, and then another 4,000 during operation until 2030.
The report also contains the promise that expansion at Heathrow has the potential to end youth unemployment in the five surrounding boroughs to the airport – Ealing, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Slough and Spelthorne. Youth unemployment currently accounts for a third of total local unemployment in the five local boroughs. More than 76,000 people are already directly employed on site in Heathrow. In the surrounding area, Heathrow supports a total of 114,000 jobs and accounts for one in five (22%) of local jobs.
Heathrow already runs programmes aimed at investing in young people and providing them with the skills they need to compete in a global market. The Heathrow Academy offers courses aimed at unemployed local residents and supports the airport’s objective to recruit half of their new workers from local boroughs.
Heathrow CEO, John Holland-Kaye, said: “Heathrow is more than an airport: it is a national asset and a critical part of our local and national economy. An additional runway at Heathrow will mean more than an increased flight capacity, it will lead to more jobs, more opportunities for youth and a reinvigorated local economy. The promise of Heathrow, the prize we can secure should our expansion proceed, is British prosperity we can all benefit from.”