Airlines ask for stats to back up calls to axe passenger tax

Marion Dakers
AIRLINES have stepped up pressure on the government to scrap a lucrative tax on plane passengers, by commissioning an independent report on the cost of the levy to the UK economy.

Virgin, IAG, easyJet and Ryanair have asked consultancy PwC to produce an objective report on the impact of air passenger duty (APD), which is paid by travellers taking off from a British airport. APD costs £13 to £184 per passenger.

The Treasury expects to receive £2.9bn in air passenger duty this year, after it rose at double the rate of inflation in April.

But carriers claim the tax is driving passengers away from British airports in favour of other European destinations. They put aside rivalries to lobby for an end to the levy last year and hope to have stats from PwC by autumn.