The break-up of BAA’s monopoly ownership of the leading airports in London and Scotland will be ordered tomorrow by the Competition Commission in the most draconian corporate divestiture ever demanded by the watchdog.

BAA is already in the middle of selling Gatwick, the second largest UK airport, but the commission is expected to order it to dispose of both Stansted and either Edinburgh or Glasgow airports in order to remedy what it claims are severe competition shortcomings in the airports market.

The long-awaited break-up of BAA, the world’s biggest airports group, comes at a sensitive moment for Ferrovial, the Spanish majority owner, which must seek buyers in the toughest conditions for decades in global financial markets and amid sharp falls in passenger numbers at airports around the world.

Financial Times