Ryanair is closing a United Kingdom base blaming 'burden' of air passenger duty

Ryanair flights Glasgow Airport

GettyRyanair flights The airline is to close their UK base at Glasgow Airport

Ryanair, Europe's second largest airline, has announced it will close its one aircraft base at Glasgow International Airport from November this year.

The move puts more than 300 jobs at risk, with Ryanair cutting the number of routes out of Glasgow from 23 to three.

RYANAIR is closing its base at Glasgow Airport - dropping 20 of its flight routes from the city.

Chief commercial officer David O'Brien said the decision was down to Air Passenger Duty.

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However, while the change could lead to 300 fewer jobs at Glasgow airport, it will likely create 700 new jobs at Edinburgh airport.

A spokesman for the airport said there was "no doubt" that failing to replace APD with the cheaper air departure tax was behind the decision. The reality is this capacity will be reallocated elsewhere in Europe to countries with more favourable aviation taxation policies to Scotland's detriment.

"Sadly our Glasgow base will close, about half a million of those passengers will transfer through Edinburgh", he said. We can not sit back and risk Scotland's connectivity being further eroded.

"The behaviour of Ryanair raises some serious questions, but this announcement also shows that the shambolic Brexit negotiations are having a detrimental impact on the airline industry".

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Edinburgh Airport chief executive Gordon Dewar said: "I find myself torn between the pleasure of the new routes and the relief really that these cuts being seen at Glasgow are not being suffered in Edinburgh".

The twice weekly service comes as Cork Airport is seeing strong passenger growth, with numbers up 4% in 2017, and a further 4% growth forecasted this year.

"But this has been deferred until the issues raised in relation to the Highlands and Islands exemption have been resolved to ensure that the devolved powers are not compromised". Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

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