Tuesday newspaper round-up: Heathrow, Cyprus. RBS...

heathrow

Heathrow plans may lead to ticket price rise; Cyprus to receive long-awaited bailout; RBS chief defends bonus.

Heathrow is at loggerheads with the major airlines after proposing to increase landing charges almost 6pc above the rate of inflation from next year. British Airways, Lufthansa and Virgin Atlantic attacked the price increases, which could see landing costs jump from £19.33 per passenger at present to £27.30 by 2018. The changes were announced as part of Heathrow's business plan for the five-year period between 2014 and 2019. [The Telegraph]

Cyprus is likely to receive its long-awaited eurozone bailout by the end of March, according to the European Central Bank executive Jörg Asmussen, pictured. Cyprus is hoping to secure a 17.5bn euros (£14.8bn) bailout from other European member states, but some German politicians have been hesitant in approving the payment.

"There must be no doubt about this: if Cyprus gets no external help, it will slide into default," said Mr Asmussen in an interview with Handelsblatt newspaper. He added, however, that the payment could not be a "one-way street", and the Nicosia government would be required to fulfil tough conditions by scaling down its financial sector and introducing more banking transparency. [The Independent]

The chief executive of Royal Bank of Scotland mounted a dogged defence of his bonus last night, despite mounting criticism over the failures that allowed Libor-rigging to continue for years after he arrived. Stephen Hester insisted that he deserved the £780,000 payout from his long-term incentive package because of the "huge things" he had achieved since arriving at the taxpayer-owned bank in 2008. Sir Philip Hampton, the bank's chairman, went farther, suggesting that Mr Hester was underpaid by comparison with other global top bankers and adding that the bonus, which comes on top of a £1.1 million salary and £400,000 pension contribution, was "modest". [The Times]

A stand-off between the Treasury and EDF Energy is threatening to scupper the French state-controlled company's £14bn nuclear reactor project in Somerset and to wreck Britain's new-build programme. Talks have broken down over the level of subsidy - provided by levies on consumers' energy bills - awarded to EDF Energy in return for building Britain's first reactors for decades. It comes a week after Centrica, the owner of British Gas, decided to pull out of the project, claiming that ballooning costs and lengthening delays made it too risky. [The Times]

 

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