The aviation sector must be a priority in any post-pandemic recovery plans. This is according to Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune who highlighted the need for connectivity at our regional airports. MEP Clune has welcomed the €126 million announced in the Budget for investment in the aviation sector saying this financial support will help airports recover from Covid-19. However MEP Clune has stressed that airports such as Cork and Shannon cannot be forgotten and investment will continue to be needed as they recover from the devastating effects of the pandemic. MEP Clune points out that connectivity to Europe and the rest of the world is vital for regional airports.
MEP Clune said “I am delighted to see that the aviation sector will benefit from a direct investment of €126 million which will help our regional airports recover from the devastating impact of Covid-19 on air travel. However we must continue to seek increased connectivity for our regional airports and ensure that locations such as Cork and Shannon are connected to Europe and the rest of the world with key routes. Our continued air connectivity to the US is vital and we must ensure that we continue to invest in developing those connections”.
In Budget 2022 it was announced that Shannon and Cork airports are being admitted into the Regional Airports Programme (RAP) that is due to receive €36 million in current and capital funding, which will also support Ireland West, Donegal and Kerry airports.
MEP Clune “We rely heavily on the aviation sector, both nationally and locally we must ensure that we do not become overly reliant on just one airport and we continue to seek investment for regional airports. There has been some good news from Cork Airport recently with new routes announced by KLM and Ryanair and I hope this investment continues. Shannon also got a boost recently with news that flights to the US will reopen next year and Heathrow also has returned which will help increase connectivity to America and the rest of the world on key routes to Amsterdam, London and the US”.