Grant Shapps: It is ‘imperative' that aviation recovers in 2022

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It is ‘imperative’ that the aviation sector recovers from the coronavirus in 2022, according to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps (Steve Parsons/PA) (PA Archive)

It is “imperative” that the aviation sector recovers from the coronavirus pandemic in 2022, according to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps

The Cabinet Minister acknowledged that “Covid is far from over”, and stated that the presence of variants of the virus in a number of countries “remains a concern”.

But he insisted that “considerable progress” has been made this year, and described the recent relaxation of the UK’s travel rules as “a clear sign that we are well on the way to recovery”.

It's time to look forward to rebooting tourism and trade

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps

Speaking at the Airport Operators Association’s annual conference, Mr Shapps said: “Global travel next year is predicted to grow significantly, coming after the worst two years on record. That will provide some welcome relief.

“So, now it’s time to look forward to rebooting tourism and trade, to getting the fleet back up in the air where they belong, welcoming passengers back to busy airports, and securing an aviation recovery that is safe and sustainable.

“That’s more than a hope for 2022. It’s an imperative and one that this Government is committed to achieving, together with you.”

Latest figures from Heathrow show the number of passengers who travelled through the airport in September was just 38% of pre-pandemic levels.

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