Economic Policy and Strategy

The CAA's Economic Policy and Strategy team applies economic and statistical analysis to develop and support policies relating to a wide range of aviation issues.  It works closely with colleagues in the sections responsible for international aviation policy, airport regulation and NATS licensing who take the lead in presenting and promoting the Authority’s policies. 

Although the majority of the team’s work is concerned with airlines, work areas can also involve airports and air traffic control.  Among the current topics of major concern are the development of aviation infrastructure and liberalisation and competition issues in the airline industry.

The team uses airline and airport statistics collected by the Aviation Data Unit and data from the Continuous and Regional surveys collected by Surveys section to produce market analyses and to evaluate the economic consequences of policy options. These analyses are used for a variety of purposes:

  • to assist the Department for Transport when it conducts air service negotiations with foreign countries;
  • to give advice to competition authorities when they assess aviation competition issues;
  • to provide supporting material when the Authority carries out its licensing functions.

The team provides general analytical support especially in the area of econometrics and statistics to the rest of the Economic Regulation Group.  Examples include a report on long haul passenger operations to and from the UK, studies into the benchmarking of airport costs and efficiency, and passenger preferences for London airports.  The team also provides forecasts to the section responsible for airport regulation and NATS licensing concerning the regulation of Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, and Manchester airports, and of NATS.  Forecasts are also used in the development of policies related to both airports and airlines.