MAG (Manchester Airports Group) has announced a £440 million investment in Manchester Airport that it says will create thousands of jobs and unlock billions of pounds of economic value for the North of England over the next decade.
MAG owns and operates Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands Airports, and is privately managed on behalf of its shareholders — Australian investment fund IFM Investors (35.5%), Manchester City Council (35.5%) and nine other Greater Manchester councils (29%).
MAG said the investment is the final phase of the £1.3 billion Manchester Airport Transformation Programme (MAN-TP), first announced in 2015 with a 10-year vision to “revolutionise the customer experience at the Northern hub and unlock the potential of its two full-length runways.”
The first phase saw Terminal 2 more than double in size.
Mag said the latest investment will “complete the transformation” of Terminal 2 “delivering improvement to all stages of the passenger journey – from check-in to baggage reclaim – as well as upgrading its airfield to cater for next generation aircraft.”
Upon completion in 2025, around 80% of all passengers will use the expanded Terminal 2, with Terminal 1 set to close – 63 years after it was opened in 1962.
MAG said more than 500 jobs will be created in the construction phase “while independent analysis shows around 16,400 extra jobs will be generated by 2040 as a result of the economic activity stimulated by the expansion of the airport and its route network.”
MAG said the same research – by York Aviation – revealed that Manchester Airport’s current contribution to the Northern economy of £3.5 billion is expected to soar by nearly 80% to £6.3 billion by 2040.
And a further £2.9 billion boost will be triggered through the increased productivity of businesses travelling and trading globally through Manchester over the same period.
MAG CEO Charlie Cornish said: “Manchester Airport is a key economic asset for the North, and this investment will maximise the contribution it makes to creating a balanced and globally competitive UK economy.
“Our £1.3bn transformation programme demonstrates our long-term commitment to providing a great airport experience for passengers who travel through Manchester.
“I’m delighted to be announcing the go-ahead for the final phase, which will open in 2025, connecting the people and businesses of the North to dozens more global destinations, and creating jobs and stimulating increased levels of trade and tourism.”
Chris Woodroofe, Managing Director of Manchester Airport, said: “It is hugely exciting to be announcing this significant investment in Manchester Airport. It represents a major milestone in the history of both our airport, and the region as a whole.
“By completing the transformation of Terminal 2, we will not only be offering passengers across the North an unrivalled choice of destinations, but also providing them with world class facilities and a great overall experience when they travel through Manchester.
“I cannot wait to see the plans come to fruition, for the benefit of all of our customers, colleagues and supporters.”
Deepa Bharadwaj, Head of Infrastructure Europe, IFM Investors, said: “This announcement is extremely positive news for Manchester Airport, its colleagues, passengers and airline customers.
“As a pension fund owned infrastructure investor, IFM’s commitment to MAG is very long-term, unlocking significant value for the North of England, and the UK economy as a whole.”