Civil Aviation Auth.

REVIEW OF MANCHESTER AIRPORT

Civil Aviation Authority
15 July 2002


News Release

EMBARGOED UNTIL 16.30 HOURS, MONDAY, 15 JULY

15 July 2002

REVIEW OF MANCHESTER AIRPORT: REQUEST FROM THE COMPETITION COMMISSION FOR AN
EXTENSION



Under the terms of the Civil Aviation Authority's reference made on 28 February
2002, the Competition Commission was due to report within six months, by 27
August 2002.  The Commission has now asked the CAA to agree to that period being
extended to 31 December 2002.



The Airports Act allows the Commission to apply for a single extension of up to
a maximum of six months and the CAA may allow an extension if it is satisfied
that there are special reasons why the report cannot be made within the period
originally specified in the reference.



The reasons the Commission has given for applying for an extension are:

•        It has had to spend a great deal of time considering the approach to
setting charges, not least because of the considerable amount of thought that
the CAA has devoted over the last two years to fundamental changes to the way in
which the maximum level of airport charges should be determined, particularly
the proposed switch to a dual till (RRCB). Consequently, the Commission has only
recently been able to turn its attention to the detailed implications of the
various possible approaches for modelling scenarios that might form the basis of
determining charges;

•        Much of the data needed by the Commission has been coming in late.  For
example, the Commission has only seen recently an outline of Manchester's
provisional capital expenditure programme for the first time.



In its request the Commission has stated that while it has asked for a four
month extension its current 'best guess' is that it should be able to deliver
the report during October.  However, the CAA notes that the formal position
under the Airports Act is that the Commission would be able to report at any
time within an extended period.



The CAA is considering the Commission's request.  In doing so it will be
interested in the views in particular of Manchester Airport and its users.  The
CAA will wish to respond fairly quickly to the Commission's request so any
comments should be sent by no later than Friday 19 July.  Comments preferably by
e-mail should be addressed to [email protected]  Alternatively,
comments can be addressed to:



Paul Taylor

Manager, Regulatory Operations

Economic Regulation Group

Civil Aviation Authority

45-59 Kingsway

London WC2B 6TE



Telephone: 020 7453 6232



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