Non-EU trade at Heathrow dwarfs the amount passing through Gatwick

Oliver Gill
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Behind The Scenes At Heathrow's Terminal Five
Heathrow's terminal five was opened in March 2008 (Source: Getty)

Heathrow Airport turned up the heat on expansion-rival Gatwick by saying it is Britain's non-EU trading hub.

The airport implied that it is Britain's post-Brexit vote airport by highlighting nearly a third of exports to non-EU countries took off from its runways in the last year, as compared to 0.2 per cent from Gatwick.

Read more: Flybe boss wants national focus on regional issues over Heathrow v Gatwick

Drawing a parallel between Britain's Olympic stars – who flew back into Heathrow – and amid the ongoing debate as to which UK airport will receive the go-ahead for expansion, chief exec John Holland-Kaye said:

Britain should not accept bronze, when we could so easily win gold. So now is the time to back the winners in our economy and expand Britain's biggest and most successful port, Heathrow.

We can get exporters, large and small, from all across Britain connected to the growing markets of the world, and it is urgent that we get on with it. That is why we are looking at options to connect Britain to growth quicker and cheaper.

Heathrow also revealed another record month of passengers flowing through its terminals, nudging up its overall August numbers by 0.1 per cent to 7.3m.

(Source: Heathrow Airport traffic summary)

Flights to the Middle East grew by 9.7 per cent in August compared to the same month in 2015. Meanwhile, departures to British destinations dropped by 10.7 per cent and Africa by 4.8 per cent.