Scottish govt axes planned air tax cut

The Scottish government has axed controversial plans to cut the amount of tax paid by passengers flying from Scottish airports.

The initiative was intended to cut air departure tax by half before scrapping it altogether, but environmental campaigners warned the move could increase the number of flights, and consequently lead to a rise in greenhouse gas emissions.

Confirming the scrapping of the plans, Finance Secretary Derek Mackay, said the move - which was a legacy of Alex Salmond’s time as First Minister - was “no longer compatible” with the government’s climate targets.

He added: "All parts of government and society have a contribution to make to meeting this challenge.

"We continue to support our tourism industry, which is going from strength to strength, and we will work with the sector to develop in a sustainable way.”

While environmental campaigners welcomed the move, the airline industry has made its displeasure known, with the boss of Edinburgh Airport accusing the government of leading the industry “down a path of failed promises for three years”.