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Airports National Policy Statement Review

Volume 673: debated on Thursday 12 March 2020

18. Whether he has made an estimate of the time it will take to review the Airports National Policy Statement. [R] (901508)

The judgment by the Court of Appeal was complex, and the Government need time to consider it carefully. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State issued a written statement on 27 February.

I apologise for my earlier mistiming, Mr Speaker.

Does my hon. Friend agree that, as well as digesting what I agree are the complex implications of that judgment, she could take this opportunity to consider the report by the New Economic Foundation, entitled “Baggage Claim”? That report debunks many of the received wisdoms about the value to the UK economy of Heathrow expansion and sets out in detail the economic opportunities created by regional expansion, especially in terms of levelling-up, which is a clear commitment of this Government.

As my hon. Friend has outlined, just as I have a number of times today, the Court of Appeal judgment is complex. We are considering it, and we will set out our next steps in due course. On regional connectivity, we are committed to delivering airport expansion that is in line with our environmental obligations. We are also committed to levelling up and ensuring that people are able to travel, whichever part of the country they live in, and that obviously relates to local and regional airports.