Minster for Transport inaction on Shannon “shocking and unacceptable” - Senator Paul Gavan
Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan today questioned the CEO of Shannon on the announcement of Ryanair suspending all flights from Shannon Airport, and on the future of the airport, at the Oireachtas Transport Committee.
Senator Paul Gavan said:
“I questioned the Shannon CEO if the loss of Ryanair flights could have been avoided as is being reported, and I asked further if the stand alone model for Shannon airport needs to change to secure its future.
“We all know we are in a global crisis but inaction from Government is not helping the future of Shannon and other regional airports. Ryanair CEO Eddie Wilson stated that there had been no contact from the Minister of Transport to try to avert the further cancellation of flights from Shannon. I find this shocking and unacceptable.
“In today's Committee, Donal Moriarty CEO of Aer Lingus said it had been Aer Lingus' plan to recommence Shannon to Heathrow in December but that will now not go ahead.
"Eddie Wilson from Ryanair said if something is to be done for Cork and Shannon, it must be done now by Government. He further spoke of the lack of communication from the Minster to the airlines.
“We have to question the Ministers' interest in the future of the Shannon Airport. Government needs to understand that aviation is vitally important to regional development in the State, and Shannon is absolutely crucial to the economic future of the Limerick and the whole mid-west region.
“The decline of Shannon was present before the Covid crisis. Dublin Airport continuing to grow in recent years has fed an accommodation and traffic problem in Dublin, and in-turn, it has helped to starve the Mid-West.
“We need to rethink the model for Shannon, integrate the airport into a national airport authority, and we need action and interest from Government on the future of the airport.”