VR74 – MR from the chancellor/Infrastructure secretary, Cardiff Airport

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Andrew97
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R74 - Cardiff Airport, Rt. Hon. Rakas MP (Chancellor Of The Exchequer and Infrastructure)


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Ministerial Report: Cardiff Airport

Secretary of State: The Rt. Hon. Rakas MP

A Ministerial Report responding to the passage of M621 in accordance with Her Majesty's Governments commitment to respond to all motions passed by this parliament within 28 days.

This Ministerial Report is designed to appropriately respond to the concerns raised by this great House in the form of the passage through parliament of M621 with regards to the privatisation of Cardiff Airport.

M621 raised the concern that Cardiff Airport has been a sustainably loss making entity for several years and successfully expressed the desire to reduce taxpayer exposure in this venture in the division lobby. Acquired by the Welsh Government in 2013 through the creation of a holding company Cardiff Airport has had minimal success in presenting itself as a viable alternative to the nearby competitor Bristol Airport with few unique passenger routes and an annual passenger deficit to Bristol Airport of several million passengers.

As a result of the passage of M621 Her Majesty's Government can hereby announce that it has instructed the Board Of Directors of WGC Holdco Limited to begin the sale process of Cardiff Airport in whole with the sales process to be completed no later than 1st April 2022.

In the best effort to keeping Cardiff Airport open in the long run, preserving the wider benefits to local employment and growth throughout the supply chain Her Majesty's Government believes that this is best achieved via greater strategic integration between Cardiff and Bristol Airport and as such considers its preferred buyer to be the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan. Her Majesty's Government has therefore instructed the Board Of Directors of WGC Holdco Limited to approach the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan and attempt to negotiate satisfactory terms before perusing other alternatives.

Notes
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This Ministerial Report acts in our capacity as the Welsh Assembly as provided by the guidance document

Her Majesty's Government (House of Commons) will in a pending Transport Act also amend the Welsh, Scottish and Northern Ireland Transport Powers Acts to limit the ability of the devolved assemblies to provide unrestrained financial assistance via equity purchase.*

The estimated value of the sale in whole to the Welsh Government is £68.7m.

Note that a similar mandated sale of Glasgow Prestwick Airport was also considered however in canon the Scottish Executive has already begun a sales process. Her Majesty's Treasury did also consider the position of the Scottish Executive's ownership of Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) and the eleven airports it owns however for strategic and logistical reasons we concluded that continued public ownership was appropriate at the current time.

M621 - https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=6633494

Information - https://seneddresearch.blog/2020/03/...t-spent-so-far

Bristol Airport Ownership - https://www.bristolairport.co.uk/abo...2030%2C%202018

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Miss Maddie
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This report doesn't care about Wales, the people of Wales and value for money. Easy nay!
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Bailey14
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Going to have to disagree with colleagues from my party and support this Ministerial Report. Do I necessarily support the selling of Cardiff Airport? No I do not. Do I think however that we should carry on debating this when the motion passed emphatically? No I do not. The debate has happened and the government has responded - I won’t stand in the way of this.

Aye.
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04MR17
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(Original post by Bailey14)
Going to have to disagree with colleagues from my party and support this Ministerial Report. Do I necessarily support the selling of Cardiff Airport? No I do not. Do I think however that we should carry on debating this when the motion passed emphatically? No I do not. The debate has happened and the government has responded - I won’t stand in the way of this.

Aye.
Principles like this make you a good egg.

Aye for rather similar reasons!
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Possibly this
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In response to Miss Maddie to her question for me from the other thread, I share your concern for the people of Wales. The government has a commitment to all 4 nations of this United Kingdom and the government is willing to ignore that, I think that is a reckless decision as Cardiff Airport, whilst it may not be as successful as that of Bristol, still provides great economic benefit to the local area, even if the airport itself is loss-making, yet the supposed party of business is happy to ignore that. The new buyers have no proven vested interest in maintaining the services and standards of Cardiff Airport that the public sector has set.

Therefore I think it's wholly unwise to support this plan as it de-powers the Welsh capital city as well as the surrounding area, sticking two fingers to the welsh economy and makes it blindingly obvious who the government care about and who they do not.
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CatusStarbright
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(Original post by Bailey14)
Going to have to disagree with colleagues from my party and support this Ministerial Report. Do I necessarily support the selling of Cardiff Airport? No I do not. Do I think however that we should carry on debating this when the motion passed emphatically? No I do not. The debate has happened and the government has responded - I won’t stand in the way of this.

Aye.
I respect that.
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Jammy Duel
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Cannot say I agree with the government choosing their preferred byer without having a bidding process, it cannot guarantee that this represents good value, nor that it leads to the best outcome for the long term prospects of the airport and it isn't even arbitrarily choosing British either, it's arbitrarily choosing to shift to being owned by the Canadian state.
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Saracen's Fez
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A hard no to flogging off Welsh national assets to Canada to try and merge them with Bristol!
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FRS500
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Cardiff Airport creates an immense number of jobs for the local area. This is a sector of the economy which has already been dented by the effects of COVID-19 and the insolvency of Flybe.

Shipping off Welsh assets without Welsh approval doesn't make up for a lack of policy

Big nay from me.
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Iñigo de Loyola
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(Original post by JMR2020.)
Not necessarily
In that case, why do you oppose the privatisation of Cardiff airport? I'd understand why you'd oppose it if you believed that airports should be run by the state, but I don't see why you think the state should run a loss-making airport when an airport nearby is making a profit.
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Miss Maddie
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I agree with Fez. The Fezometer rule strikes again. It's a hard no!

It's disappointing that MPs are happy to sell off national assets for an undisclosed fee to the lowest bidder. Any sensible MP would want an tender process to sell to the highest bidder. But when were MHOC MPs known for logical reasoning?
Last edited by Miss Maddie; 1 month ago
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Rakas21
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(Original post by FRS500)
Shipping off Welsh assets without Welsh approval doesn't make up for a lack of policy
Important to note that as per the notes we are acting as the Welsh Executive here in issuing the order to sell so there is Welsh approval (granted in mhoc land we have a situation where all devolved assemblies have the same parliamentary makeup as Westminister in effect).
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FRS500
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(Original post by Rakas21)
Important to note that as per the notes we are acting as the Welsh Executive here in issuing the order to sell so there is Welsh approval (granted in mhoc land we have a situation where all devolved assemblies have the same parliamentary makeup as Westminister in effect).
Point taken!

Still object though
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Andrew97
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The following Votes have been removed:

No: S-Ryan2020
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Andrew97
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Order, Order

The Ayes to the right: 25
The Noes to the left: 15
Abstains: 6

The Ayes have it, The Ayes have it. Unlock!
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