Taxpayers’ money for airport deal

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MILLIONS of pounds are to be pumped into Newcastle International Airport.

The region’s local authorities have announced that a refinancing package will see £68million of taxpayers’ money pumped into its biggest airport.

Shareholders also selected a new parter for a 49 per cent shareholding in the airport.

Representatives of seven councils, including Sunderland City Council and Durham County Council, which held a 51 per cent stake in the airport, held a behind-closed-doors meeting to discuss the future of the airport.

Following a comprehensive selection process, global investment company AMP Capital was announced as the new partner.

The company is said to have proven airport expertise through its investments in Melbourne and Launceston airports, in Australia.

The majority 51 per cent shareholding will be retained by the seven North East local authorities, collectively known as LA7.

As part of the process, six of the LA7 – Sunderland and Durham included – will make a further investment totalling £68million.