Stat of the day: £14bn

The amount poor transport connections to emerging markets could cost UK business over the next decade.

Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

Heathrow airport may claim to be Europe’s busiest airport in the world, but its focus on quantity, rather than quality, could prove unwise.

According to a report by economic consultants Frontier Economics, a lack of direct flights to emerging markets could cost Britain £14m in lost business in the next 10 years. Apparently, the UK may already be losing £1.2bn a year as trade goes to better-connected competitors.

Paris and Frankfurt already have 1,000 more flights a year to China than Heathrow, which could mean Heathrow loses its status as the busiest airport in Europe by 2021. ‘The centre of gravity in the world economy is shifting and Britain should be forging new links with emerging markets,’ BAA boss Colin Matthews said.

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