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Cork Independent


Immediate intervention for cork airport

Thursday, 30th April, 2015 1:00am

At Cork City Council's meeting on Monday night, Fianna Fáil councillor Nicholas O'Keefe called for the Minister for Transport and the Government to immediately intervene in the future of Cork Airport.

Cllr O'Keefe's motion called for "swift, substantive and meaningful actions on this vitally important issue for the ongoing development of our great city and the entire region".

"It's very worrying times for everyone," he said and pointed out that FedEx, the airport's last existing freight operator, will be moving to Shannon in June."There's been a total lack of engagement by members of the Government on this issue," he said and called for a write-down of debt, a group development fund for appropriate flights and a marketing fund.Fine Gael's John Buttimer described accusations by Fianna Fáil councillors that Cork Ministers had let down the county as "nothing short of irony".

"If it has been saddled with debt, it was under Fianna Fáil. He added that passenger numbers had fallen by around half a million annually due to the loss of the Cork-Dublin flight, which also took place under the previous Government.

"I thought the way some Fianna Fáil councillors spoke was political opportunism. I think all councillors have Cork Airport as a priority."

Deputy Lord Mayor Kenneth O'Flynn said that Shannon Airport has been "gifted just over half a billion of assets, when we are getting things right in Cork, and we are being to let down by this Government. Well done to Shannon Airport and its politicians.

"We are going to have figures announcing shortly that Shannon Airport will overtake Cork Airport by 20,000 or more." he added.

Charges review

Major changes in the way airport charges are regulated in Ireland could happen after Minister For Transport Paschal Donohoe this week announced a review is to take place. Changes could help Cork Airport's competitiveness.

The current system of airport charging regulation involves the setting of a price cap by the commission for Aviation Regulation (CAR) with the objective of ensuring that charges paid by airlines to Dublin Airport facilitate the efficient and economic development of the airport.

The review is to be conducted by Indecon consultants and will be completed by the end of this year. Any changes could come into effect in 2016 and replace the current controversial system which has been criticised over the years, since its introduction in 2001.

CBA breakfast

The Cork Business Association is hosting a business breakfast on Tuesday 5 May at the Clarion Hotel with Kevin Toland, chief executive of the Dublin Airport Authority, on the future of Cork Airport.

Kevin Toland, who became chief executive of the DAA in January 2013, will give an up to date analysis on the current economic and future development position of Cork Airport.

The briefing will take place on Tuesday 5 May in The Clarion Hotel, Lapps Quay at 7.45am. It costs €15 for CBA members and €20 for non-members. Email or ring 021-4278295 for information.

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