Highlands and Islands airports

Transport Scotland recognises that the provision of air services in the Highlands and Islands is vital to the social and economic welfare of the areas they serve.

This provision of airport services through Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd (HIAL) contributes to the general objective of maintaining population and promoting sustainable economic growth in these areas. But the airports are loss-making and are supported by subsidies from the Scottish Government.

Management of Airports

HIAL is responsible for the operation of the following 11 airports:

  • Barra
  • Benbecula
  • Campbeltown
  • Dundee
  • Inverness
  • Islay
  • Kirkwall
  • Stornoway
  • Sumburgh
  • Tiree
  • Wick

It is a Non-Departmental Public Body, wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers. HIAL is non-profit making and subsidy is provided to offset the losses incurred in its operation. This allows airport charges to be contained at levels that enable the operation of commercial air services.

The relationship between Transport Scotland and HIAL is set out in the HIAL framework.

Board of Directors

HIAL's Board of Directors is accountable to the Scottish Ministers. The Board operates under its Members Code of Conduct, which is derived from the Model Code produced by the Standards Commission of Scotland, together with recognition of other published corporate governance guidelines.

The Board is responsible for:

  • the determination of the company's strategic plan and direction
  • security, safety and operational matters
  • commercial and route development
  • investment in the maintenance of HIAL's airport and in its wider estate
  • financial management
  • risk assessment and management
  • health and safety
  • pay, pensions and employment issues

The board is composed of eight members:

  • Non-executive Chair
  • Managing Director
  • Finance Director
  • five Non-executive Directors