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Published on Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Transport Secretary steps in to reassure industry after Brexit article furore

The Secretary of State for Transport has written an open letter reiterating the 'very strong rebuttal' from No 10 following a shocking report in the Sunday Times at the weekend.

The report, which shook the industry, claimed the government is considering issuing a warning to Brits not to book holidays after March 29 in case of a Brexit no-deal.

Ministers were quick to dismiss the front page story, which even suggested the government was considering bailing out travel companies put at risk.

In a letter addressed to the aviation industry yesterday, Chris Grayling said he wanted to provide further reassurance and to be clear on the Government's position with regards to Brexit.

But, noticeably, he did not categorically state that flights will continue to operate no matter what the outcome of the Brexit negotiations.

Instead, his letter said: "As you will already be aware, both the UK and the EU have made clear their desire to ensure flights between the UK and EU continue in any scenario. I believe both the UK and the EU have a determination to retain the aviation links which bring such significant economic and cultural benefits for both sides.

"This department fully recognises the importance of giving passengers and businesses confidence to book their holidays and business trips to and from the EU after Brexit.

"So as I mentioned at the last industry roundtable, we are exploring what communications will be needed to provide that reassurance. I would like to continue to work with you on precisely this in the coming days.

"I hope this provides you with some reassurance and look forward to further discussions with you in the coming weeks and months."

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