Calls to cut airport departure tax

Plane taking offMPs have received more than 10,000 emails from constituents in the last two weeks over the level of the Air Passenger Duty (APD) airport departure tax, a campaign group has said.

Voters have sent MPs a template email from the website of campaign group A Fair Tax on Flying which seeks a reduction in APD which rose by around 8% in April this year.

The group also wants MPs to back a parliamentary motion which expresses concern about the financial impact of APD "on ordinary families and their ability to fly" and has already won the cross-party support of 44 MPs.

One supporter is Graham Brady MP, chairman of the Conservative Party's backbench 1922 Committee.

He said: "The UK already has the highest air passenger taxes anywhere in the world and this is harming our competitiveness as a nation as well as adding unreasonably to the cost of living for millions of people.

"I hope that the Treasury will be persuaded to look again at the impact of this damaging tax."

Institute of Directors director general Simon Walker said: "The UK's air passenger taxes are now the highest in the world, which harms our economy in numerous ways. All the hard work to build up tourism and inward investment is undermined by this unfair tax."

The Airport Operators Association chief executive Darren Caplan said: "APD is now one of the most despised stealth taxes in the UK and we hope that many, many more people let their MP know what they think."

The campaign group is aiming to win the support of 100,000 people over the summer.

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