It’s great that travel restrictions have eased and some of our planes are back in the air but the aviation and travel sectors are some of most affected by the pandemic and the disruption continues. With so many local jobs and businesses relying on these industries it has been an absolute priority of mine to campaign on behalf of the sectors, to protect jobs and also encourage innovation and investment to ensure our aviation sector not just survives but thrives in the longer term.
For the past year I’ve been calling for testing to be used instead of quarantine, the introduction of internationally agreed safety standards and, more recently, the introduction of international vaccine passports. These are necessary in order to support the return to international travel and build on the great progress being made this year.
However, passenger numbers are still no way near the levels previously seen, and we will all have seen headlines about the financial impact of this on airports and airlines. With thousands of jobs relying on them, we must continue to support these vital sectors while conditions remain tough. While difficulties remain, I will continue to back calls for direct support for the sector, but we also need to look to the future and provide more support for sustainable aviation and measures to reduce aircraft noise.
I believe the best way to support the sector is to restore consumer confidence now, and to incentivise investment and help to shape a world leading sustainable aviation industry. I welcome the Government’s commitment to Jet Zero and the support for the development of sustainable aviation fuels. As highlighted previously I have also called for the reform of Air Passenger Duty to reward those airlines who drive this agenda forwards.
I regularly raise these issues with Ministerial colleagues and will continue to advocate on behalf of the sector. For more information on my work to support the aviation sector, including my more recent parliamentary questions and debate contributions please visit: https://www.drbenspencer.org.uk/campaigns/local-jobs-business/aviation.
UK aviation was born out of pushing boundaries, taking bold steps and leading the world in innovation and design, with Brooklands in Weybridge being a focal point of innovation and daring! With ambition and vision I believe we can do so once again, and turn one of the greatest challenges of the pandemic into one of our greatest successes.