LISBON: The Social Democrats (PSD) have criticised the hike for being “far superior” to those being implemented in Lisbon and Porto.
Newspaper Correio da Manhã reported that the PSD’s comments came at the same time as the People’s Party, the CDS-PP, grilled the government on what effects British airline Monarch’s insolvency has had on Algarve hospitality.
According to national airport management company ANA, a 25 cent increase is in the pipeline for all passengers travelling to Faro (a 3.1 percent rise), while Lisbon will see an 18 cent hike (up 1.94 percent), Porto 17 cents (up 2.19 percent) and the Azores will see its airport tax rise by eight cents (1.18 percent).
Airport taxes in Madeira and Beja will remain unchanged. In Parliament, Cristóvão Norte, the Algarve-elected PSD MP, said that “when you know routes are being cancelled in low season, as happened with Ryanair, it can produce a slower growth of passengers in Faro; no one understands why Faro will have the biggest increase in airport taxes.”
He reiterated that the taxes “play an important role in the region’s competitiveness”.
The CDS-PP has this week also queried Economy Minister, Manuel Caldeira Cabral, on Monarch’s collapse and the effects it could have on the Algarve’s hotels.
Three MPs recalled that as well as the airline, Monarch also had tour operators, who left debts to the Algarve hotel sector, and asked the minister if he was monitoring the situation and supporting the affected businesses.
News of the tax hikes emerged just hours before Faro airport issued a statement commemorating receiving eight million passengers this year, an occasion celebrated on Tuesday.
The benchmark was hit with passengers arriving on Jet2 flight LS 1221 from Birmingham, which landed slightly ahead of schedule, at around 1pm.
ANA CEO, Carlos Lacerda, said, “This celebration is the culmination of work carried out by the ANA team, in particular that of Faro Airport, which, in recent years, has accompanied the growth and adaptation of this Airport to the needs of airlines and passengers, offering a better and more complete service without which growth would have been restricted.”