The secretary of state for transport, Chris Grayling, has visited Manchester Airport to see work begin on its ten year, £1 billion transformation programme.
The programme is designed to deliver a major boost to the UK’s growth prospects and international competitiveness.
This project, the largest private investment in the region, will reinforce Manchester Airport’s standing as the UK’s global hub in the north of England, enabling better and more international connections and supporting economic growth across the North.
The Manchester Airport Transformation Programme will provide millions of passengers and airlines with facilities that combine state of the art services with excellent customer service.
With the new development complete, the airport will be able to grow alongside a thriving northern economy to handle 45 million passengers a year, an increase of almost 20 million compared to today.
In recent years, the airport has become the only airport outside London to offer many direct routes to long haul destinations like Beijing, San Francisco, Houston and Muscat.
Grayling said: “Aviation is central to our future prosperity as we leave the European Union.
“As a global, trading nation we want to build on the great industry we have today and create opportunities for people up and down the country.
“Our new aviation strategy will look beyond the new runway at Heathrow and sets out a comprehensive long-term plan for UK aviation.
“It will support jobs and economic growth across the whole of the UK.
“This is great news for the local economy and for passengers who will be able to fly to more destinations, more often.”
Manchester Airports Group, owner of Manchester Airport, estimates that MAN-TP will create more than 1,500 jobs in the construction phase alone, nearly 200 of which will be apprentices.
Manchester Airport already plays a key role in the Northern Powerhouse, generating £5 billion every year in economic activity in the local and regional economy, employing 20,000 people on site and supporting a further 25,000 jobs indirectly.
Charlie Cornish, chief executive, MAG, said: “Today marks a significant moment in the history of Manchester Airport and demonstrates the confidence that we have in the long term future of both the north and the UK economy.
“This is the largest private investment that has been made in the region for some time and the increased connectivity that it will deliver will enable it to become one of the most accessible and productive regions in Europe.
“It has never been more important that people and businesses across the whole country have easy access to global markets and our investment in transforming the airport will do this for the 25 million people who live within two hours of Manchester Airport.”