The impending appointment of a new Chairman to the Board of Shannon Group has been described as a pivotal step for the future of the Airport.
It comes after Transport Minister Eamon Ryan suggested that the imbalance between Dublin and other airports in terms of their share of flights should be addressed by investment in the regions, and a change in focus in the country’s tourism strategy, rather than in direct supports for the likes of Shannon.
As the aviation crisis continues to grip Shannon and other airports, the Transport Minister last week intimated it would be up to the Shannon Group Board itself to come up with solutions for its problems.
Speaking on Clare FM’s Morning Focus this past Friday, Minister Eamon Ryan admitted there’s an imbalance in terms of the amount of traffic passing through Dublin, but suggested that the way to boost the other airports could come by focussing on tourism.
Reacting to the Minister’s comments today, former Mayor of Clare, Patricia McCarthy agreed the Board should be responsible for determining policy for the airport, but insists that must be done in the context of Government policy.
The ex-Shannon representative believes the new Chair of the Board, who is soon to be appointed, will play an important role.
Former Fianna Fáil TD and Minister Tony Killeen agreed with one part of the Minister’s comments, namely that the solution to Shannon’s issues will have to come from this region.
He feels the Airport, the Council, third level institutions and other stakeholders need to come together with a longer-term plan that outlines the key steps needed to boost the Airport, and in turn the wider region: