International Airlines Group chief executive Willie Walsh has launched a heated attack on the Government for damaging the aviation industry.
Walsh accused the coalition government of being out of touch with opportunities for aviation, highlighting lack of capacity, high taxation and a stringent visa regime as being major factors that are deterring foreign visitors.
The comments were made during the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) World Air Transport Summit in Beijing.
“The Government takes for granted aviation’s economic contribution — and that it will continue despite their efforts to suppress it.”
He added: “It’s completely disconnected in terms of strategy and we’re suffering seriously as a result.”
Walsh also revealed that British Airways has put its expansion plans on hold due to uncertainty caused by the euro crisis.
IAG owns Spain’s Iberia and recently increased its presence at London’s Heathrow through the acquisition of BMI.