Tuesday, 21 September 2021
Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport
138. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will call on the Labour Court to engage with the Irish Aviation Authority and the constituent trade unions of the staff panel to formulate an industrial relations agreement to facilitate the enactment of the Air Navigation and Transport Bill 2020 and the subsequent establishment of AirNav Ireland. [44618/21]
The Air Navigation and Transport Bill provides for the restructuring of Ireland’s national aviation regulation regime, by separating out the commercial air navigation functions of the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) as a standalone commercial semi-State body to be known as AirNav Ireland, and by merging the Commission for Aviation Regulation’s economic and consumer protection regulatory functions with the safety and security functions of the IAA. This important reform will strengthen Ireland’s regulatory arrangements and bring Ireland into line with international best practice, thereby ensuring that Ireland maintains its reputation for excellence within the aviation sector globally, as the sector begins its recovery from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
As with other restructurings of this kind in the public sector, the Bill proposes a statutory safeguarding of employees’ existing terms and conditions, including pensions. On the specific matter of agreeing a Industrial Relations agreement, it is my understanding that a draft agreement has been provided to the IAA Staff Panel and will be discussed within the IAA’s Joint Consultation Forum. With regard to any prior non-restructuring industrial relations matters, it is in the best interests of all parties involved to continue to engage in the long established internal processes mutually agreed between IAA management and the IAA staff representative bodies, so that a satisfactory resolution can be reached.