Business Questions 21st September 2011 – Cardiff Airport

Mark Drakeford: A wnaiff y Gweinidog ddatganiad am ddyfodol Maes Awyr Caerdydd.    
[Will the Minister make a statement on the future of Cardiff Airport.]

Edwina Hart: Cardiff Airport is an international gateway to Wales, and its future is very important to the Welsh economy. I am aware that the airport is in active commercial discussions with several airlines regarding establishing new routes, and I am confident that there will be positive announcements in the coming months.   

Mark Drakeford: Minister, do you agree that the decline of Cardiff Airport is a clear example of market failure and that it exposes the complete inadequacies of policies pursued at Westminster of a hand-wringing, do-nothing approach to the future of the economy? Will you continue in Wales to pursue active government, which means that the power that we can bring to improving that vital service—both to Cardiff and to the city region—will be pursued in the future?   

Edwina Hart: Yes, I think that we will keep to that clear policy direction, because there has to be intervention from Government. With regard to the airport, we also have to look at its management and the commitment there. The First Minister has had discussions with the airport’s senior management and its owners. A good relationship is developing, which will hopefully bear fruit in the form of improvements to the airport and an increase in the number of passengers who use it.