Airport bid could spell 5,000 NI jobs: claim

Embargoed to 0001 Wednesday May 4
BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Undated handout image issued by Heathrow Airport of an artist's impression showing how Heathrow Airport could look with a third runway.  Ministers have been urged to set out a clear timetable for airport expansion in the South East. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday May 4, 2016. The Commons' Transport Select Committee claimed the arguments for and against increasing aviation capacity "have changed little in a quarter of a century". See PA story AIR Heathrow. Photo credit should read: Heathrow Airport/PA Wire

NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Embargoed to 0001 Wednesday May 4 BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Undated handout image issued by Heathrow Airport of an artist's impression showing how Heathrow Airport could look with a third runway. Ministers have been urged to set out a clear timetable for airport expansion in the South East. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday May 4, 2016. The Commons' Transport Select Committee claimed the arguments for and against increasing aviation capacity "have changed little in a quarter of a century". See PA story AIR Heathrow. Photo credit should read: Heathrow Airport/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

Heathrow Airport could create up to 5,000 new jobs in Northern Ireland if an expansion bid gets the go-ahead, the London airport’s chief executive has claimed.

John Holland-Kaye said air links with Belfast International Airport could also be restored if the London hub is permitted to build a third runway.

In July last year, the Airports Commission recommended that the runway should be built at Heathrow alongside a “significant” package of measures to make its expansion more acceptable to nearby residents. A final decision has not been taken by the Government.

Mr Holland-Kaye told a Belfast business audience: “We cannot be the generation that avoids the big decisions, that pulls the ladder up behind us. We need to make the right choices in our generation so that the next generation, our children, can enjoy the benefits we have enjoyed.

“With Heathrow expansion we will create up to 5,000 new jobs here in Northern Ireland while we build and when we have built – providing opportunities for young people.

“We can grow the number of airports in Northern Ireland connected to Heathrow - with flights to Aldergrove.”

Mr Holland-Kaye has already announced plans to end night flights in an attempt to support Heathrow’s offer to build another runway.

British Airways and Irish flag carrier Aer Lingus already connect George Best Belfast City Airport with Heathrow. Aer Lingus left the International Airport for Belfast City in 2012.

Mr Holland-Kaye addressed the CBI in Northern Ireland’s annual dinner in Belfast on Thursday.