Heathrow asks for tax relief

Photo: EPA

The chief of the British airport Heathrow John Holland-Kaye asked for the involvement of UK's minister of finance Rishi Sunak in granting a relief of property tax payments, BBC reported. Similar deductions of taxes have already been enforced for sectors that suffered worst from the Covid-19 lockdown.

“We want a level playing field so we don’t have to pay that either,” John Holland-Kaye told BBC television. “That is just fair.” He also joined calls from other business leaders for Sunak to extend his job retention scheme when he announces a budget plan on March 3.

Heathrow has reported a £2bn annual loss after passenger numbers during the coronavirus pandemic dropped to levels last seen in the 1970s. It said 2020 was the toughest year in its 75-year history and the loss “underlines the devastating impact of Covid-19 on aviation”.

The airport normally has about 80 million passengers per year, but it said numbers in 2020 dropped to 22 million, with more than half of those travelling in January and February before the coronavirus crisis took hold. In the long-term, if passenger numbers were to drop below 27 million, Heathrow would be in danger of breaching deals it has with creditors.

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