*Senator Timmy Dooley with TD Michael McNamara. Photograph: Joe Buckley
A Government roadmap for the reopening of the aviation sector needs to be introduced, one Clare Senator has said.
Up to 130 jobs in Cork and Shannon Airports are at risk with Ryanair warning they will close their bases for the winter season if current quarantine restrictions are not altered.
Senator Timmy Dooley (FF) has cautioned that if the airline suspends their base at Shannon Airport, it could take a period of three years for it to return. “Aviation industry planning is done in years. If bases are lost it may be three years before their restoration. Not only will this proposed closure hit hardest those directly employed by Ryanair, there will be collateral and long-term damage to people in the aviation industry at both airports, local hotels, and businesses”.
Subsequent impacts to tourism and investment in the Mid-West were also highlighted by the ex Fianna Fáil spokesperson on transport.
“I believe the Government needs to examine the European approach as they prepare our new COVID-19 roadmap for living with this virus. I will be engaging with my colleagues in Government on behalf of the those in the Mid-West on these new measures. Jobs are at risk and a region may be left with severely limited connectivity long term if we allow it to happen,” Dooley added.