UK growth depends on new airport, says Boris

BRITAIN faces a period of economic stagnation unless a new international airport is built in the south east, London Mayor Boris Johnson said yesterday.

The government has ruled out expansion of London’s existing airports, but Johnson has lobbied for a new hub airport in the Thames Estuary, which has also been opposed on environmental grounds.

“There’s no doubt that to do nothing will lead to economic stagnation. The government must now grasp the nettle and begin serious plans for the multi-runway solution,” he said at the launch of a report on airport capacity.

The plan, which could cost up to £50bn, aims to increase flight capacity without expanding Heathrow, which is almost close to full capacity.

But the London Chamber of Commerce, while praising the plans, said the only short-term solution would be to allow a third runway at Heathrow to go ahead.