Airports and airlines to meet transport minister for talks on aviation connectivity

Airports and airlines to meet transport minister for talks on aviation connectivity

Cork Airport.

Scrutiny of Ireland’s aviation connectivity will be the subject of a meeting of The Committee on Transport and Communications Networks when they meet tomorrow, Wednesday, at Leinster House.

Cork Airport will be represented at the talks by daa, who also operate Dublin Airport. Shannon Group PLC, who operate Shannon Airport, will also be in attendance.

Airlines Aer Lingus and Ryanair are part of the two-hour meeting, following Ryanair’s promise to shut down their bases at both Cork and Shannon this winter if the government fails to adopt the EU travel list later this month.

A new European travel list that will classify countries in terms of Covid-19 risk is expected to come into effect from October 13.

The so-called traffic light system is expected to allow unrestricted air travel for Irish visitors and citizens to and from regions in Europe classified as green or amber by the European Centre for Disease Control.

The closure of Ryanair’s winter base at Cork Airport would have a major impact, after what has already been a difficult financial year.

Airport management recently revealed that it expects to lose around €20m this year as passenger numbers plummeted by around 95% during lockdown.

Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan and Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton will also be in attendance at tomorrow’s meeting, which will see witnesses appear before the Committee for its first public sitting of this Dáil term.

It is the first of two sittings scheduled for this week, with Senior Officials from the Department of Transport also due before the committee on Thursday for a briefing.

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