23 July 2013

The Gatwick Diamond Initiative, the business-led economic development partnership, has voiced its support for expansion at London Gatwick following the Airport's submission to the Davies Commission.

The airport wants a second runway to be positioned south of the existing airport as the first stage in creating a constellation of three airports (Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted), each with two runways. 

This approach has already been proven in cities such as New York, Tokyo, Moscow, Istanbul and Paris. Rosemary French, Executive Director of the Gatwick Diamond Initiative said: ‘We believe that Gatwick’s vision is the best solution for the £19bn Gatwick Diamond business community.  Surely it is better that all three airports perform a hub role, rather than rely on a single airport." 

With a focus on key strategic issues, the Gatwick Diamond Initiative works with business leaders, business membership organisations and government to address local needs to ensure Gatwick is a world-class place in which to live, work and do business. "Clearly we have a vested interest in growing Gatwick as many firms are located here to access international markets", said Rosemary.

"However, we would also be alarmed if Heathrow were to be closed in favour of a new airport, as proposed by Boris Johnson.  We object to proposals that £50bn might be taken from the public purse to pay for a new airport, when the South East is already crying out for infrastructure investment in road and rail."

She concluded:  "The government should be supporting the South East economy which is the engine of economic growth in the UK.  A second runway after 2019, on land which is already safeguarded at Gatwick, whilst maintaining Heathrow with two runways, will serve the Gatwick Diamond, South East and UK plc very well."

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