Heathrow's exports soar six per cent in September

Rebecca Smith
No Brexit clouds are looming over Heathrow
No Brexit clouds are looming over Heathrow (Source: Getty)

Heathrow Airport may have been firmly in the Remain camp ahead of the referendum vote, but its September figures suggested Brexit wasn't giving rise to much turbulence.

It welcomed a record number of passengers in September - 6.8m travelled through the airport, while Heathrow's cargo volumes rose six per cent on the back of growth to East Asia and Latin America. Brazil was up 18 per cent, China 13 per cent and Mexico seven per cent.

With the government's imminent decision on airport expansion, the matter is very much on the minds of those at airports in the south east.

Read more: Heathrow vs. Gatwick debate: Don't expect expansion anytime soon

Heathrow took the chance to state it was Britain's largest port "accounting for almost 30 per cent of all UK exports by value outside the EU last year, while Gatwick served only 0.2 per cent".

September traffic at Heathrow
September traffic at Heathrow (Source: Heathrow Airport)

And with Brexit concerns very much in the public eye, Heathrow reiterated plans to give Britain a "Brexit Boost" with an additional 25,000 flights on existing runways from 2021, four years before a third runway would open.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: "The Prime Minister is clear that her government will step up and do what's right for Britain. Expanding our country's largest port will give Britain's businesses the best connected trading network in the world. We'll show that we're confident about our future and determined to make a success of Brexit."

The independent Airports Commission found in favour of Heathrow last July, though the government has pushed back the decision on several occasions.

Read more: Gatwick takes a swipe at the Airports Commission over inaccurate forecasts

Gatwick has repeatedly called the independent Airports Commission' findings flawed, saying the fact Gatwick had flown 42m passengers in the last 12 months (14 years ahead of the commission's forecast) undermined its credibility and findings.

But Holland-Kaye said "the independent evidence is conclusive - Heathrow expansion will make Britain stronger and fairer for everyone".

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