With the spectre of tough new taxes on aviation fuel potentially looming large on the horizon, one influential body is calling for industry unity.
New chairman of the Baltic Air Charter Association (BACA) Markaham Jackson, issued the rallying call ahead of what many in the aviation profession fear is the inevitable imposition of further taxation, whether through VAT or otherwise.
Jackson said: “During the next few years, I honestly think that a tax on fuel will happen and BACA needs to add its voice with all the other organisations.
“We are not as much of a lobby group as we should be and we want to increase membership to address issues such as fuel [tax] and the environment.”
And Jackson aimed squarely at the UK government, who, he said would do all it could to curb aviation activity “if that would bring the money.”
The new chairman appealed to the grass routes of BACA’s membership to take a more active part in the organisation in order to secure a consensus on environmental issues. It could even lobby parliament on what is rapidly becoming the focal point of the political landscape
“The Chancellor of the Exchequer is always strapped for money,” he said, “and thinks aviation is a cash cow to receive more money without it hurting too much.”
The awards event, hosted by former England rugby centre and 2003 World Cup winner, Will Greenwood, brought together hundreds of aviation industry representatives eager to stress the benefits of the sector and crucially in Jackson’s eyes, to network on a professional basis
“The more diverse membership we have, the stronger BACA will be,” he said, adding: “The serious issue of fuel tax must be opposed by us, who are the voice of the air charter industry.”