MPs call for British Airways to lose Heathrow slots as it begins shedding jobs

The airline is planning to cut about 12,000 jobs, or 28% of its workforce, as it struggles through the Covid-19 pandemic

Passengers wearing a face mask or covering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, arrive at Heathrow airport, west London, on July 10, 2020. The British government on Friday revealed the first exemptions from its coronavirus quarantine, with arrivals from Germany, France, Spain and Italy no longer required to self-isolate from July 10. Since June 8, it has required all overseas arrivals -- including UK residents -- to self-quarantine to avoid the risk of importing new cases from abroad. / AFP / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS
Passengers wearing a face mask or covering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, arrive at Heathrow airport, west London, on July 10, 2020. The British government on Friday revealed the first exemptions from its coronavirus quarantine, with arrivals from Germany, France, Spain and Italy no longer required to self-isolate from July 10. Since June 8, it has required all overseas arrivals -- including UK residents -- to self-quarantine to avoid the risk of importing new cases from abroad. / AFP / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is under pressure to strip British Airways of valuable landing slots at local airports amid concern about the airline’s plan to cut 12,000 jobs, according to a report in the Daily Mail.

More than 100 British members of parliament from various political parties are asking the prime minister to reconsider BA’s right to slots at airports such as Heathrow, the newspaper said.

The mounting political pressure comes after International Airlines Group-owned BA revealed it would cut about 28 per cent of its 42,000 workers as it struggles to survive amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The airline holds more than half of the slots – which give planes the right to take off and land at a certain time – at Heathrow. The slots, particularly the ones at peak times, can be worth several million pounds each. Union Unite and politicians are pressuring the prime minister, saying that airlines should only be able to keep the slots if they also demonstrate they are being socially responsible and “internally investing” in the business, the newspaper reported.

A British Airways spokesman said in a statement to the Daily Mail: “We are acting to protect as many jobs as possible. We call on Unite and GMB to consult with us on our proposals as pilot union, Balpa, is doing.”

Published: July 11, 2020 07:02 PM

SHARE

Editor's Picks
NEWSLETTERS
Sign up to:

* Please select one

Most Read