Manston Airport – Government confirms support for an air freight hub
September 15th 2016
The Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, has confirmed ongoing support for Manston Airport.
Speaking at transport questions in the Commons this (Thursday) morning, Manston`s MP, Sir Roger Gale, said
“As Britain leaves the EU we shall have to develop more business with Asia and the Far East. That will create a demand not only for more passenger traffic but particularly for more air freight. Will my Rt. Hon. Friend confirm that RiverOak needs to succeed in its efforts to open an air freight hub at Manston and is it not the case that Manston Airport must be preserved as a piece of important national infrastructure?”
Responding the Secretary of State said that while he recognised that there were differences of local opinion about the future of the airport in East Kent the Government “would be very happy to see an air-freight hub developed at Manston”:
Speaking after the exchange Sir Roger said:
“It is clear that as we develop new markets to replace those that we shall lose within the EU and that as goods and personnel have to travel greater distances we are going to need much more capacity in the South East.
Whatever decision is taken about an additional runway at Gatwick or Heathrow we need capacity now if we are not to lose more business to mainland Europe. Manston Airport is available immediately and we must see this project through as soon as possible. I am pleased, therefore, that the Secretary of State did not hesitate to reinforce the Government`s ongoing support for Manston as an airport”.