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Volume 699: debated on Wednesday 5 March 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their response to proposals that each major United Kingdom airport should be owned and managed separately. [HL2224]

Following a reference by the Office of Fair Trading in March 2007, the Competition Commission is carrying out an inquiry into the supply of airport services by BAA.

The issues statement published by the Competition Commission in August 2007 ( identifies ownership as one of the issues that they will be considering in detail as part of the inquiry. This will include considering the evidence on the extent to which separately owned airports compete. The inquiry is due to conclude by March 2009.

The Competition Commission is the UK's independent competition authority and is therefore carrying out this investigation independent of government, industry or other parties. The role of the Department for Transport in this investigation is, like other parties, to respond to requests for evidence. It has no role in determining the Competition Commission's final views but will of course have a keen interest in those findings and the extent to which they may have implications for the delivery of the air transport White Paper policies.