UK Business comes together to call for Heathrow expansion

More than 30 Chambers of Commerce, stretching from Inverness to Kent, have expressed their backing for increasing capacity at Britain’s only hub airport.

The chambers, which represent more than 40,000 businesses, are keen to see the expansion given the widespread economic benefits it will deliver.

Independent analysis from the UK Government’s Airports Commission state an expanded Heathrow would create up to 180,000 jobs, of which close to 80,000 would be outside London and the South East.

It would also add up to £211 billion extra to the UK economy.

In a letter sent to the Airport Commission, which will make its recommendation to Government in coming months, local and regional Chambers of Commerce declared their support for Heathrow.

Heathrow has been full for ten years and expansion is critical to UK’s future economic prosperity. As the UK’s only hub airport, Heathrow can put on frequent and direct flights that drive tourism, inward investment and connect British businesses to key markets in places like China, India and Brazil.

Explaining why Glasgow Chamber of Commerce backed Heathrow, its Chief Executive Stuart Patrick said: “The question for us is to what extent either will allow us to maintain the range and depth of international connections that follow on from domestic flights. Gatwick hasn’t really convinced us of how their model would work.”

Heathrow’s status as the UK’s only hub airport makes it pivotal to much of the country’s international trade.

It already carries just over a quarter of all UK exports by value and would be able to double its cargo capacity if it were able to expand.

This would help in meeting the Government’s target of doubling exports – and getting 100,000 more UK companies trading abroad.

This is why the UK’s business community has been so vocal in its backing of the move, as Heathrow expansion would not only secure jobs all over the UK, but would create many new ones as well.

Image: Jacqueline Abromeit /