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Airport regulation : tackling congestion and environmental problems

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This paper deals with alternative policy options for tackling congestion and environmental problems in the German airport sector. The starting point of the discussion is the planned privatisation of several airports in Germany, which is normally justified on productive efficiency grounds. However, when designing an appropriate airport policy, allocative efficiency must also be regarded, which means the efficient usage of existing facilities and timely investment in new capacity. Airport charges must not only reflect operational costs of infrastructure supply but also take account of the social costs of airport usage. This paper shows the inefficiency of the current regulatory rules for solving congestion and environmental problems and proposes alternative solutions, taking into account the need for planning stability not only for the airlines but also for the airports, which is a prerequisite for lowering the transaction costs of the air transport and infrastructure system.

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Hartmut Wolf

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