BAA to fight on in airport sell-off
Thursday 15 September 2011
Airports operator BAA today vowed to fight on in its battle against a ruling that it must sell Stansted and either Edinburgh or Glasgow airports.
The operator, which also owns Heathrow and has already sold Gatwick, said it will launch an appeal with the Competition Appeal Tribunal tomorrow.
It marks the latest stage in the legal wranglings which have been rumbling on since 2009 when BAA was ordered to sell some of its airports by the Competition Commission.
The Competition Commission's original ruling found there were problems which adversely affected passengers and airlines at all seven BAA airports, which also include Southampton and Aberdeen.
It said Gatwick would have to be sold first, followed by Stansted and then Edinburgh or Glasgow, with BAA being left to choose which of the two Scottish airports it would dispose of.
BAA claimed earlier this year that there had been material changes since the commission first made its decision, including its sale of Gatwick for £1.5 billion to Global Infrastructure Partners.
It also said the Government's decision not to build any more runways in the South East for the foreseeable future should have a bearing on its original decision.
When the commission's investigation started in 2007, it was feared that BAA's strong presence in the South East could slow any future development of runways.
BAA is appealing against the latest decision by the Competition Commission, in July, when it found there had been no material changes that would have altered its original ruling on Stansted.
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