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Grant Shapps, the transport secretary, has faced criticism today after registering his UK-based plane in the US. Aviation experts say that this move lets him benefit from more relaxed regulations.

Grant Shapps under fire: The loophole is not illegal but political opponents have claimed that Mr Shapps, who has a private pilot’s license, is undermining the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Labour MP Grahame Morris, who sits on the Transport Select Committee, said.”The Transport Secretary should lead by example and explain why his private plane is registered in the US. Rather than under the UK registration system for which he is accountable.”

There is no justification for Mr Shapps to opt out of the UK regulatory framework. Registering his own private plane under the light touch regulatory regime of the US.

“Aircraft safety is paramount, and rather than avoiding responsibility, the Transport Secretary should be considering measures to ensure all UK-based aircraft are covered by the more robust UK regulatory framework.”

Andrew Charlton is an aviation analyst and he told the Politico website that “You might wonder what it says that the U.K. transport secretary is not subject to the U.K. CAA’s jurisdiction. But to be fair to him, there may be good reasons”.

Mr Shapps has so far refused to comment on the story.

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