Clare Fine Gael TD, Joe Carey, has today (Wednesday) given his full support to radical new proposals being considered by the Government to completely overhaul Shannon Airport. The proposals include establishing a global tax-incentivised centre for the aviation industry at the airport, which Deputy Carey says could bring significant investment into the Midwest region.
“These plans represent a bold new beginning for Shannon, which will recapture the pioneering and entrepreneurial spirit that marked the airport’s beginnings. Speaking before the Shannon Chamber of Commerce at the weekend, the Minister for Transport, Leo Varadkar, outlined his preference to resuscitate Shannon by establishing a ‘separation plus’ model. This would involve an independent airport working with other agencies to attract international aviation-based services to Shannon.
“Tax incentives would form a part of this arrangement. It would allow for a cluster of aviation services to be developed in Shannon for the European market, such as aircraft refitting and recycling. The services centre would be supported by private sector investment, and I believe it could allow Shannon to become a world leader in this kind of enterprise.
“I have been consistently pursuing the issue of Shannon Airport with Minister Varadkar over the last year. Decisive action is needed to halt the devastating decline in traffic through the airport. Put simply, the current business model has failed and must be changed to kick-start its recovery.
“The Minister is expected to bring a memo to Government within the coming weeks, seeking approval for this ambitious new plan. I am confident that this will allow Shannon to unlock its potential, bringing jobs and growth to the region.
“I am extremely glad that Shannon is moving towards a model of governance which I have long advocated. Fine Gael in Government is giving this project the priority it deserves. I will continue to press this issue with Minister Varadkar to ensure that the revitalised Shannon Airport will be a dynamic resource for the region delivering more routes, passengers and cargo to the airport, as well as an increase in ancillary activity.
“I am determined that the new structure which we will put in place will lead to a regenerated, economically viable and thriving Shannon Airport for the benefit of the entire region.”