November 2022

ETRC White Paper “Supporting International competitiveness of European Aviation: Introducing Arrivals Duty & Tax Free in the European Union”

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Aviation remains of strategic importance to the European Union and Member States. The European aviation ecosystem continues to require significant support to relaunch in a post-COVID-19 world and maintain global competitiveness.

European airports rely on commercial (nonaeronautical) revenue for in the region of 50% of total income. Airport commercial income is derived primarily from retail sales, most notably duty & tax free sales to international travellers, underlining the significance of Arrivals Duty and Tax Free to European airports.

EU airports compete with their international counterparts and commercial revenue is the driving force behind airport investment and development across the globe. By not allowing Arrivals Duty Free, the EU is simply handing our competitors a major competitive advantage.

October 2022

ETRC Case Study Report Arrival Duty Free

By York Aviation

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The report examines how arrivals duty free shops have developed in three example countries outside the EU and how they have helped airports to grow and develop. The case studies also consider the evidence around some of the common objections to arrivals shops, namely the potential to interfere with domestic markets and the potential to increase smuggling. The three countries examined are Norway, Switzerland and Turkey.

April 2021

ETRC White Paper ”COVID 19 Aviation Recovery – Introducing Arrivals Duty & Tax Free in the European Union”

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The European aviation ecosystem will require significant support for the sector to recover and relaunch in a post-COVID-19 world. ETRC believes that allowing duty and tax free on arrival is a simple but effective way of creating a new and sustainable revenue stream for airports which is cost-neutral to governments

This paper explores the role Arrivals Duty and Tax Free can play in providing new sources of employment and commercial revenue to the European airports industry, as recommended by the Aviation Round Table Report on the Recovery of European Aviation, a cross industry strategic blueprint for the sustainable recovery of European aviation.

February 2021 update

ETRC Report ”The Economic Impact of Arrivals Duty and Tax Free Shopping in the EU”

by York Aviation (first published October 2020)

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The COVID-19 pandemic has created the greatest crisis the EU aviation industry has ever experienced. Introducing duty and tax free shopping on arrival is a cost-free way for EU governments to support the aviation ecosystem and to maintain airport jobs. This is a unique opportunity to level the playing field with non-EU airports and contribute to the environmental objectives of the EU Green Deal.

The report, commissioned by ETRC from York Aviation, outlines the potential economic benefits achievable through the introduction of arrivals duty and tax free shopping at EU airports. 

March 2016

DFWC Study “Economic Impact of Duty Free and Travel Retail in Europe”

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The report, which demonstrates the significant contribution that duty free and travel retail make to the European transport economy, was commissioned by the Duty Free World Council (DFWC) with the support of ETRC, and written by Dr Harry Bush CB, former Group Director Economic Regulation at the UK Civil Aviation Authority and previously Director, HM Treasury; and Daniel Storey, former senior regulator at the CAA and senior policy maker at HM Treasury.

Duty free and travel retail has become a key component of aviation and maritime financing as well as an integral part of the travel experience for European passengers. This discretionary activity, driven by customer choice and enabled by commercial innovation, generated revenues in Europe

of €15.4 billion in 2014, of which over €10 billion was generated at airports (67%) and €1.6 billion in the maritime sector (11%).

It is therefore essential for European policy-makers to recognise that the continued vitality of this sector is not just merely beneficial for passengers’ travel experience or airports’ funding in isolation, but also underpins the provision of crucial transport infrastructure across Europe.

September 2013

ETRC Study “The economics and regulation of on-board carriage of European airport retail sales”

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Commissioned by ETRC, with the support of ACI Europe, “The economics and regulation of on-board carriage of European airport retail sales” presents a policy focused report, which offers a comprehensive pan-European study on airline hand luggage policy and airport revenue.

This independent study, by Dr Harry Bush former Director of the UK Civil Aviation Authority, and now Director of London-based Highpoint Economics, and Mr Daniel Storey, considers the impact that restrictions imposed by some airlines on passengers carrying airport shopping on-board are having on passengers’ experience at airports.

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