“The First Minister says that it’s time to sell Wales to the world like never before, and yet once again he has opted not to use the international airport his government owns.
“It’s a remarkable decision and sends a dreadful message to potential investors, and indeed the wider public.
“The excuse that there are no direct flights to America doesn’t wash either; flying from London isn’t direct when it first entails a two-and-a-half hour drive to London.“Having a viable, recognised international airport could be hugely influential in raising Wales’ international profile, yet sadly Carwyn seems to prefer Heathrow Airport to the one his government has spent tens of millions of pounds on.”For once the Tories may have a flight as far as I can see Cardiff Airport has only one direct flight to the USA to Orlando in Florida but there appears to be a direct flight from the popular tourist resort to most destinations in the USA including Atalanta.
Of course there may have been a a problem in securing seating on a flight to Orlando for the First Minister .
Even then there is the option of using the method of an indirect flight.
“The Welsh Government funds regular promotional campaigns at Cardiff Airport highlighting its links with North America, via Amsterdam or Dublin, and yet the man who technically owns the airport refuses to use it.Indeed many find a indirect flight from Amsterdam cheaper than flying from Heathrow.
“If Carwyn Jones won’t support the airport he purchased what hope do taxpayers have of getting a return on their investment?
“This was a missed opportunity to highlight Cardiff’s connectivity with the rest of the world, and taxpayers will want reassurances that the First Minister isn’t giving more of their money to rival airports just to avoid a little bit of extra waiting time – or to boost his First Class air miles.”
“This is silly, hypocritical guff from the Tories.
“International visits by the First Minister are seriously time-limited, and therefore direct flights are often essential. Unlike the previous Tory Prime Minister, we haven’t bought a private airliner costing over £10m.
“However, we are delighted that the Welsh Tories now seem interested in an airport they once wanted to see go to the wall.
“Cardiff is the UK’s fastest growing airport, with the rolling total of passengers numbering 1,326,923 – this represents 29% passenger growth over the last 12 months. Had the Tories been in Government that number would be zero.”
Its not much of a defence and does not really explain why Carwyn chose not tho use Cardiff Airport.
Perhaps in an indication of our appalling internal and external transport problems there is an old Irish joke
An Englishman, who was far off his course and confused about his next directions, asked an Irishman, cutting peat in the wilds of Connemara, how to get to Letterfrack. The Irishman labored over the directions, so intricate and roundabout were the roads, until, having done his best, he added this: “If it was meself that was going to Letterfrack, faith I wouldn’t start from here!
Maybe in the 21st Century it is more true of Wales than Ireland and Labour and Carwyn need to explain this.