Heathrow backers 'fly in face' of Brexit with additional £650m

Additional investment will be used for expansion of Terminal 2 and new road tunnel, say airport bosses

(Image credit: 2014 Getty Images)

Heathrow has received a £650m boost from its financial backers in a move the Daily Telegraph says has "flown in the face of any fears" over Brexit.

The money has been provided by a consortium of investors which own the UK's main air hub, including Spanish infrastructure giant Ferrovial, Qatar's sovereign wealth fund and one of Quebec's main pension funds.

Heathrow bosses said it money would be used for projects such as "the expansion of Terminal 2 and a new southern access tunnel for road traffic to the airport". The investment is not related to the proposed third runway, which has been given preliminary permission to proceed by the government but remains subject to a parliamentary vote next year.

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After the triggering of Article 50 yesterday, the move "suggests confidence by the overseas investors in Britain's potential as negotiations with the EU [over Brexit] get under way", says the Telegraph. It follows fresh commitment to the country by carmakers Nissan and Toyota and a new UK design hub from consumer electronics pioneer Dyson.

However, concerns over the impact of leaving the EU and the single market have been repeatedly raised by manufacturing and farming trade groups and many financial services giants are shifting jobs to the continent.

Heathrow is important in this context because "roughly 26 per cent of UK exports" go through the airport, says the Telegraph.

Sheikh Abdulla Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani, chief executive of Qatar Investment Authority, said: "Our investment in Heathrow is much more than just an investment in one of the world’s great airports – it's an investment in Britain's connections to the world.

"As the UK reshapes its role in the world, we confirm our commitment as proud partners of a great trading nation."

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