§ Mr. Mackinlay
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) to what extent and on what occasions since the beginning of 1985 Ministers or representatives of Government Departments have been involved in discussions with the Government of Malaysia, and the Malaysian airline MAS, about increasing the availability of slots for that airline at Heathrow airport;702W
(2) to what extent and on what occasions since the beginning of 1985 his Department has been involved in discussions with the Civil Aviation Authority about increasing the availability of slots for the Malaysian airline MAS at Heathrow airport.
§ Mr. Norris
No discussions have been held with any of these parties concerning the availability of slots at Heathrow airport. Slot allocation is a matter for the independent co-ordinator at the airport.
Governmental talks concerning air services arrangements at which both MAS and British Airways were represented were held with the Malaysian Government in July and September 1985, March and August 1989 and March 1993. In 1985 liberal air service arrangements were concluded involving increases in capacity and amendments to routeing and traffic rights for both sides. For the outcome of the 1989 talks I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Carmarthen (Mr. Williams) on 15 Febraury. No further rights were agreed at the talks in 1993 and no dates for further discussions have so far been agreed.