Carál Ní Chuilín (MLA)

Send an email to Carál Ní Chuilín MLA

Dear Ms Ní Chuilín,

I am writing to ask for your help in reducing Air Passenger Duty (APD) by supporting proposals to cut this harmful tax and achieve a fair tax on flying for the whole country.

You may already be aware that the UK has one of the highest air travel taxes anywhere in the world – charging five times the global average. I am deeply concerned about the negative impact this is having on the country: making it a less attractive destination to trade with, invest in, and visit.

I wholeheartedly support the A Fair Tax on Flying campaign, backed by an alliance of our airports, airlines, travel companies, and leading businesses, who all want to see a reduction of APD to enable our country to compete on the global stage. Following the UK’s vote to leave the EU, cutting APD is a clear way to demonstrate that the UK will be open for business and intends to be as globally competitive as possible to boost economic growth.

I, alongside other campaign supporters, believe that reducing APD by at least 50% across the country will make a substantial difference to families like mine, by making flights more affordable. As someone who works hard, I want to be able to enjoy holidays with my family without being charged a premium for departing from the UK.

Since it was introduced in 1994 APD has increased by over 824%, and economic analysis by PwC found that abolishing it would boost UK GDP by 1.7% and create 61,000 new jobs by 2020.

At the very least APD should be cut in line with reductions in other European countries, including the Republic of Ireland where Dublin Airport has achieved the highest rate of passenger growth of any major airport in Europe since the abolition of APD. The UK must be part of a level playing field and halving our rate of APD would bring us level with Germany, which currently has the 2nd highest tax in Europe.

Following the Republic of Ireland’s decision to abolish APD, Dublin Airport saw a 15.4% increase in passenger growth rate in 2015 and a record 864,000 people travelled from Northern Ireland to fly to and from Dublin Airport, which in turn had a significant positive impact on the Irish economy.

With the Scottish Government committing to cutting and subsequently abolishing APD the rest of the UK must match this commitment to ensure a fair system across the country and avoid any regional disparities.

I really hope that you will help us take this matter further by raising the issue at the very highest reaches.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Yours sincerely,

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