The Competition Commission (CC) has said that BAA's common ownership of seven UK airports may not be serving well the interests of either airlines or passengers. The CC made the statement as part of its interim report on an investigation into the market for the supply of airport services by BAA.
The CC said that BAA currently dominates the airports markets in the south-east of England and in lowland Scotland.
A final report is expected to be released in August and will set out solutions to any competition problems found by the investigation. The CC said that this could include BAA being required to sell one or more of its airports.
Christopher Clarke, chairman of the BAA airports inquiry, said, We are particularly concerned by its (BAA's) apparent lack of responsiveness to the differing needs of its airline customers, and hence passengers,
Clarke noted that BAA was given ownership of Heathrow, Gatwick and Stanstead airports following privatisation in 1987, in order to ensure adequate airport capacity in south east England, despite this Clarke said there was still not enough capacity for current and future demand.