Tuesday, 16 November 2021
Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions
I thank the Minister for his response. All Members of the House are aware that aviation and tourism have been the two sectors most decimated by the Covid pandemic. Experts in the sector estimate that the pathway to recovery will take four to five years. That, in itself, is devastating for all those who depend on it. In the mid-west, we very much see Shannon Airport as being a catalyst for virtually all economic activity. We live and die on that. Its recovery will be crucial to our regional recovery.
I read with interest chapter 11 of the NDP, which deals with a whole realm of international connectivity. We are going to be at a very low starting base coming out of Covid, but within that there are opportunities. There are a number of issues I wish to raise in the Chamber today. Chapter 11 references the existing 2015 national aviation policy for Ireland. I believe that is now defunct. It only exists in name because aviation does not resemble anything referred to in that policy. The NDP alludes to a new national policy for aviation. I would be very keen to hear the Minister's thoughts on that.