The Civil Aviation Authority is expected to decide this week on whether to approve Heathrow’s plan to spend £3.3 billion on planning and early construction of its proposed third runway.
The decision is expected to be made at a CAA board meeting on Wednesday amid continued concerns form airlines costs could be passed on to airlines and passengers through higher service charges.
“With environmental, financial, political and legal hurdles ahead, there’s no guarantee a third runway will ever be built.” said IAG chief executive Willie Walsh.
“The CAA’s role is to regulate the airport effectively and protect passengers. It’s completely unacceptable for them to expect customers to stump up cash for something that’s not yet got the green light.”
A spokesman for Heathrow added: “This is a project that will deliver tens of thousands of jobs across the country, connect all of Britain to global growth and will introduce competition between airlines to bring down air fares.”
“Expansion at the airport should be delivered in a way that helps airlines keep prices down for passengers. It therefore needs to be affordable, as well as allow Heathrow Airport Limited to finance the necessary investment.” Claimed a CAA spokesperson.
“We are working hard to make sure the regulatory framework addresses these challenges in a way that delivers new capacity but without any unnecessary increases in airport charges.”