Report ‘Smacks of Desperation’ says Campaign Group

Campaign group HACAN has challenged the findings of a report published today by the British Chamber of Commerce which claims that a third runway at Heathrow would add £30 billion a year, spread over 60 years, to the UK economy (1). HACAN argues that this is out of step with previous reports including the Government’s own figures which found that the benefits to the economy would be £5 billion over 70 years.

HACAN has also criticised the way that the British Chamber of Commerce Report compares Heathrow with Paris, Frankfurt and other European cities.

HACAN Chair John Stewart said, “To compare Heathrow with other cities is not to compare like with like. The true comparison is to compare the number of passengers using all of London’s airports with the number of passengers using all of the airports at these other cities. When that is done London remains the best-connected city in the world.”

Stewart, added, “The major failing of this report that it has not factored in the environmental and social costs: the cost of noise, pollution, climate change, community destruction, traffic congestion etc. That makes a mockery of its figures.”

Stewart concluded, “Overall, this report smacks of desperation. It comes to something when a body such as the British Chamber of Commerce resorts to sensationalist claims that each year the third runway is delayed costs the country £1 billion. It is a sign that they have lost the battle for a third runway. The Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats have said they would scrap it if they win the next Election.

ENDS

Notes for Editors:

(1). The report can be found on A third runway at Heathrow would add £30 billion to UK economy

British Chambers of Commerce – London, UK

For more information:

John Stewart on 0207 737 6641 or 07957385650