Toronto Airport, World's Most Expensive, Cuts Fees

Toronto's Pearson International Airport, the most expensive place in the world to land, will reduce some fees starting Jan. 1, easing costs for airlines including Air Canada (AC/A) and WestJet Airlines Ltd. (WJA)

Landing fees at Canada's busiest airport will be cut 3.1 percent, while terminal charges will fall 4.7 percent, the Greater Toronto Airports Authority said today in a statement.

A takeoff and landing at Pearson with a Boeing Co. 747 cost more than $24,000 in 2005, the International Air Transport Association said, making the airport the world's most expensive. Comparable costs were $20,000 at New York's John F. Kennedy International and $22,500 at London's Heathrow.

The cut is ``a step in the right direction,'' said Steve Lott, a spokesman for IATA, the airline industry's main trade group. ``Now it's time for government to take action on reducing ground rents'' to let Pearson become competitive with other major airports, he said.

About 14 percent of Pearson's costs are in ground rent paid to the federal government, a situation that is unique to Canada, Lott said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hugo Miller in Toronto at hugomiller@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dave Versical at dversical@bloomberg.net

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