FT - Philip Georgiadis and Will Louch and Euan Healy

Away from the tarmac, the near-deserted site in Essex is at the centre of an escalating dispute between one of the world’s largest private equity groups and a penny stock infrastructure company.

The $426bn investment firm Carlyle Group is demanding the early repayment of a £125mn loan made to the airport in 2021, when the aviation industry was reeling from international travel restrictions.

Carlyle says it has made multiple attempts to resolve the conflict with the airport’s London-listed owner, Esken, and that the airport has breached the terms of the loan on multiple occasions.

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