Air Passenger Duty
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This week there will be two debates in the House of Commons on an issue that the Government has been doing its best to bury - Air Passenger Duty (APD). It's often cited that the UK has the world's highest air passenger tax anywhere in the world, and over the next few days MPs will, once again, be debating just how much of an impact it is having on the economy and on ordinary people's ability to travel.
Each year it is estimated that British businesses pay £500m in Air Passenger Duty (APD) to the Exchequer with a further £500m levied on foreign travellers who come to the UK to do business.
Disappointingly, but not unsurprisingly, yesterday the Chancellor stuck to his short-sighted plans to increase the UK's Air Passenger Duty (APD) for yet another year. It flies in the face of new evidence from PwC pointing to the economic benefits of abolishing APD...
George Osborne has said on more than one occasion in the past few months that he is working towards the UK having a low tax environment suitable for greater overseas investment. It is a laudable plan but does it stand up to scrutiny?
The UK airports sector has been campaigning heavily over the past 12 months on the eye-wateringly high levels of Air Passenger Duty (APD) levied in this country. APD - the Government's tax on flights - is currently the highest anywhere in the world, and has risen by between 160% and 360% since 2007.
This time last year, air passengers learned of the Government's intention to increase the tax on flights, Air Passenger Duty (APD), by twice the rate of inflation - a rise that gave the UK's air passengers a further lead in remaining the most heavily taxed anywhere in the world.
Since the air passenger duty was introduced in 1994, no study has been done about its economic impacts. If we are to levy the highest air tax in the world, surely we must understand the economic impact of doing so.