UK: Airlines criticize the Civil Aviation Authority’s decision to allow BAA to increase landing charges

Britain’s largest airlines called yesterday for the dismantling of the airports operator BAA and the Civil Aviation Authority, which regulates the country’s skies.In an unusual show of unity, the heads of bmi, easyJet, Ryanair and Virgin Atlantic publicly criticised the CAA and its decision to allow BAA to put up landing charges at Heathrow and Gatwick airports. British Airways also called for an overhaul of the regulatory system.The carriers said that the CAA’s price settlement would result in Heathrow and Gatwick landing charges increasing by 86 per cent and 49 per cent respectively over the next five years. The airline bosses want BAA, which controls all the main London airports, broken up and even individual terminals sold to new owners.They also want a moratorium on the landing charge increases while they take their case to Ruth Kelly, the Transport Secretary. The airline heads are understood to have arranged a meeting with Mrs Kelly within the next two weeks. BAA has monopoly control of London’s three most important airports – Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted – and the CAA regulates how much passengers can be charged to use these facilities.Source: timesonline; read more>>.

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