Clare Fianna Fáil Senator Timmy Dooley says the Government should consider a road map for the reopening of the aviation sector as Ryanair bases in Shannon and Cork are under threat.
He said: “The internal memo to employees of Ryanair warns that up to 130 jobs in Cork and Shannon are at risk due to the minimal numbers of passengers flying with the group on routes from these regions. Moreover, aviation industry planning is done in years. If bases are lost it may be three years before their restoration.
“Not only will this proposed closure hit hardest those directly employed by Ryanair, there will be collateral and long-term damage to people in the aviation industry at both airports, local hotels, and businesses.
“Tourism and investment in the Mid-West will be severely impacted. Our hospitality sector has had one of their most difficult years on record. Now they face the looming threat of connectivity to Europe and further afield being taken away.
“The European Commission will set out the ‘Re-open EU’ guidance which provides Members States on best practise for re-opening borders through a series of colour coded lists. This is being done in conjunction with the European Centre for Disease Protection and Control.
“I believe the Government needs to examine the European approach as they prepare our new COVID-19 roadmap for living with this virus. I will be engaging with my colleagues in Government on behalf of the those in the Mid-West on these new measures. Jobs are at risk and a region may be left with severely limited connectivity long term if we allow it to happen,” concluded Senator Dooley.