AN expansion of Birmingham Airport would be “part of the solution” for fixing the local economy and jobs market in Wyre Forest, according to a West Midlands MEP.

Conservative Philip Bradbourn, who sits on the European Parliament’s transport and tourism committee, said the EU was looking at developing regional airports and Birmingham was in line to benefit.

A political framework has been put forward by European members to help regional airports expand to support the international market and freedom of movement throughout the EU.

Mr Bradbourn said: “Birmingham Airport is best placed to take extra people and additional requirements for air travel as we try to minimise congestion in the south east of England.

“A runway extension and longer distance flights have a knock-on effect on the whole region, particularly in Worcestershire.

“I have been liaising with Mark Garnier and the idea is that we see Birmingham as a national airport and we are keeping up the pressure on the Secretary of State [Patrick McLoughlin].

“We see it as part of the economic solution and I am also able to talk to airports and airlines at the European level.”

Mr Bradbourn, who described himself as “Eurosceptic but not a withdrawalist” also wants the European Commission to force airlines to make baggage rules clearer.

He has also led a campaign to see European airports improve toilet facilities for disabled people.