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Gatwick rules out plans for second runway until 2030 at earliest

Gatwick Airport has published a masterplan for growth that rules out the need for a second runway until 2030 at the earliest.

The airport, owned by a consortium led by Global Investment Partners, has ended speculation that it would seek to build a second runway when an agreement with local authorities ends in 2019.

Its masterplan, which outlines its development plans to 2020 rules out the need for additional runway capacity until 2030, when it expects to reach full capacity with around 45 million passengers a year choosing to fly from the airport.

It believes that it will be handling 40 million passengers a year by the early 2020s, up on 34 million today.

The publication of the masterplan is made against the backdrop of an on-going debate around what a future airports policy could look like. A new draft aviation policy is currently out for consultation and a call for evidence on maintaining the UK’s hub status is expected to be published in the near future. Gatwick appears to have ruled itself out of playing such a future role.

“We remain committed to honouring the 2019 agreement which prohibits the building of any second runway before that time,” said Gatwick Airport chief executive Stewart Wingate.

“At the same time, and like any other business, our plans need to cater for all eventualities. We need to anticipate that, in the long term, a second runway at Gatwick may be needed. This means we will continue to work in partnership with our local authorities to safeguard land for future expansion because we believe it to be sensible business practice and it supports current government policy.”

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