Dáil debates

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions

Aviation Industry

9:30 pm

Photo of Michael McGrathMichael McGrath (Cork South Central, Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I thank the Deputy for raising the issue. At the outset, it should be noted that my Department, in carrying out its role in co-ordinating the NDP review, does not consider the merit of individual projects or sectoral policy strategies, as this is primarily a matter for individual Departments and agencies.

With that point noted, I would be glad to give the Deputy an overview of the NSO 6, which is the delivery of high quality international connectivity. As an island, continued investment in our port and airport connections to the UK, the EU and the rest of the world is integral to underpinning international competitiveness. It is also central to responding to the challenges as well as the opportunities arising from Brexit. The relevant sectoral strategies here are the national aviation policy, the national ports policy and the telecommunications chapter of the National Marine Planning Framework which relates to international telecommunications connectivity. These strategies play a critical role in identifying the goals and priorities for the sector and are therefore critical in informing the investment projects set out in the NDP.

In terms of our airports a range of investment are planned and under way. A new €50 million control tower has been completed at Dublin Airport and the new north runway will be completed next year. Cork and Shannon Airports will continue to be supported in their roles as key tourism and business gateways for their regions. Continued Exchequer support for smaller regional airports, including Donegal, Kerry and Knock, is planned under the regional airports programme.

Three major capital infrastructure programmes are currently ongoing in tier 1 ports, namely, Dublin, Cork and Shannon Foynes. For example, the Port of Cork is investing to redevelop the port’s existing facilities at Ringaskiddy and is due to be fully operation in the coming months. The masterplan for Rosslare Europort was granted planning permission in quarter 4 of 2020 and has identified a number of key infrastructure investments to make better use of available capacity, improve efficiencies and target specific sectors, while promoting the benefits of congestion-free access to European and UK markets.

These are just some of the many investments which will be delivered under this NSO in the coming years to support Project Ireland 2040. Further details on projects by NSO, can be found on the investment tracker on gov.ie/2040.


No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.