Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Groundhandling services at European Union airports

Delivered in Plenary - 16th April 2013

Mr President

Although the aim of the proposed new regulations on ground handling services at European Union airports has good intentions, such as attempting to open the market and increase airport efficiency, there is severe doubt that it would actually add much value to the existing directive. Recent amendments, such as the guarantee that existing collective agreements with trade unions must be honoured by any new ground handling company, have actually fallen short of mollifying union and wider stakeholder concerns. But anyway, in my view it is politically a step in the wrong direction.

Crucially, there has been a distinct lack of evidence that the legislation would increase overall airport efficiency, a topic of crucial importance to my London constituents as they begin to look forward to their summer holidays departing from busy London hub airports, such as Heathrow. As a UK Conservative, I, along with my delegation, voted against this report.