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MPs urged to protect NI's vital air freight

By Michael McHugh

Published 10/11/2015

Aldergrove could lose out to Dublin on lucrative freight traffic unless an Enterprise Zone is created, campaigners have said.

Belfast International Airport is the UK's third largest handler of air freight outside London, but rapid growth at Dublin Airport threatens to challenge its long-term future, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) added.

The lobby organisation has written to politicians calling for the development of a special trade area, where the state offers incentives like tax concessions to stimulate business investment and road upgrades to the site.

FTA NI manager, Seamus Leheny, said: "Urgent action is needed to ensure Belfast International Airport is an attractive prospect for investors and has the necessary infrastructure to support efficient air freight operations.

"BIA is Northern Ireland's only air cargo facility but operators could switch to Dublin if it becomes a cheaper option, impacting on local logistics firms and the wider economy.

"FTA is calling on MPs to support BIA's proposals to help sustain its long-term future."

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