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NECC 'welcome' decision to grant third runway at Heathrow

Newcastle Airport Credit: Newcastle Airport

North East England Chamber of Commerce has today welcomed the Government’s decision to back a new runway at Heathrow Airport.

“We are absolutely delighted with the Government’s decision to move forward with expansion at Heathrow Airport. This long-awaited conclusion is a welcome one for North East England and the whole of the UK.

“As a Chamber representing 4,000 business members we have been staunch advocates of Heathrow expansion as the right option to ensure North East businesses continue to enjoy the access they need to markets around the world.

“We would now urge MPs to support this positive decision as the National Policy Statement is brought forward.

“North East England is a globally-facing, exporting region and access to the UK’s international hub airport is a vital part of that success.

“We currently enjoy excellent connectivity to Heathrow via Newcastle International Airport and the potential for a new route to Durham Tees Valley is great news.

“A green light for airport expansion allows our businesses to make investment plans safe in the knowledge that our region’s connection to Heathrow is secure and that it has the capacity needed to support future economic growth.

– Chamber Chief Executive James Ramsbotham


Could Durham Tees Valley to London route re-open after Heathrow decision?

A plane flies over homes near Heathrow Credit: PA

A third runway at Heathrow airport has been given the go-ahead, the Government has confirmed.

It could see a return of the London to Durham Tees Valley route - according to the Government's official release on the decision.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said it was the "best option" for post-Brexit Britain.

The other shortlisted options - to extend an existing runway at Heathrow or build a second runway at Gatwick - were rejected in favour of a decision that will see more than 780 homes demolished in west London.

Fierce opponents of Heathrow expansion within Cabinet, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Education Secretary Justine Greening, will both speak out at the decision after being cleared by Mrs May to air their dissent.

The Government announcement ends more than a year of uncertainty since the Davies Commission came out in favour of Heathrow's third runway.

A public consultation will be held on the impact of the expansion before the final decision is put to MPs for a vote in the winter of 2017/18, with the runway unlikely to be in use before 2025.

A third runway will also support new connections to the UK’s regions as well as safeguarding existing domestic routes.

Heathrow has proposed a further 6 new routes to Belfast International, Liverpool, Newquay, Humberside, Prestwick and Durham Tees Valley to be added after expansion.

The 8 existing routes offered today are: Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness, Aberdeen, Belfast City, Manchester, Newcastle and Leeds Bradford. This would provide 14 domestic routes in total, and spread benefits right across the country.

Government will also take all necessary steps including, where appropriate, ring-fencing a suitable proportion of new slots for domestic routes, to ensure enhanced connectivity within the UK.

– Government statement

Friends of the Earth have 'slammed' the decision.

Today’s government decision to give the green light to a third runway at Heathrow airport “makes a complete mockery of government commitments to tackle climate change”

– Friends of the Earth.


PM: Nissan 'at heart' of UK auto industry

Prime Minister Theresa May Credit: PA

Prime Minister Theresa May says that Nissan is 'at the heart' of the British automotive industry.

The Prime Minister met Nissan chief executive Carlos Ghosn this afternoon at Downing Street, to discuss his demands for compensation due to the increased export costs associated with Brexit.

Theresa May said:

Our automotive industry is a great British success story and Nissan has been at the heart of it. Over the past 30 years they have had an excellent relationship with the UK Government, a track record of investment and innovation, and their Sunderland plant is one of the most productive anywhere in the world - a testament both to their company and the skill of our workforce.

We are now at the start of the complex negotiating process as Britain exits the EU and I have been clear that there will be challenges ahead. But I am confident we will achieve the best deal for Britain and the Government will engage closely with employers and investors as part of our work to create a global Britain.

This Government is committed to creating and supporting the right conditions for the automotive industry to go from strength to strength in the UK, now and into the future.

That's why I was pleased to have met with Mr Ghosn today to discuss our shared belief that Britain remains an outward-looking, world-leading nation in which to do business.

We will continue to work with Nissan as we develop the environment for competitiveness of the automotive industry here in the UK to ensure its success.

– Theresa May

Nissan CEO refuses to answer reporters' questions as he leaves Downing Street

As he left Downing Street this afternoon Nissan's chief executive Carlos Ghosn refused to answer reporters' questions.

Ghosn has suggested the company will halt new investment in its plant in Sunderland unless it can agree a compensation deal with the Government for any adverse financial impact from the UK's decision to withdraw from the EU.

The boss of Nissan held talks in Downing Street with the Prime Minister over the vexed subject of Nissan's future on Wearside.

Nissan boss in talks with Theresa May over future

The Nissan factory floor on Wearside. Credit: PA

The boss of Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, is holding talks in Downing Street with the Prime Minister Theresa May over the vexed subject of Nissan's future on Wearside post-Brexit.

The company has warned that future investments in the UK were under threat unless the company was compensated by the UK government for any tariffs they might have to pay for exporting cars to EU countries after Britain leaves the European single market.

We can confirm that Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn will be meeting with the UK Prime Minister Theresa May at Downing Street on the afternoon of Friday 14th October. At the meeting, Mr Ghosn, Mrs May and their teams will discuss the current situation relating to Britain’s proposed exit of the European Union. The purpose of this meeting between Mr Ghosn and Mrs May is to ensure both Nissan and the UK Government have an aligned way forward that meets the needs of both the company and the country. We do not expect any specific agreement to be communicated following this initial introductory meeting of the CEO and the Prime Minister.

– Nissan spokesperson
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