Jack Quann
Jack Quann

14.31 16 Jun 2020


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The Ryanair CEO says the aviation sector needs help now, rather than waiting for the completion of a taskforce report.

The Government set up an Aviation Taskforce, with a view to making recommendations by July 10th.

Eddie Wilson told Pat Kenny they will partake in the taskforce, but believes short-term measures can be taken before that.

"We are taking part, but the season will be over before they produce their report.

"We need action now, and the way to stimulate tourism is to get rid of these quarantines, make it easy for people to come and go in and out of Ireland, try and save some part of this holiday season - so that the hotels, restaurants and everything can get back to business.

"I think in the medium term we'll be looking at some sort of stimulus in terms of airport taxes, airport charges, because that really feeds in to generating traffic.

"We're going into a situation now whereby fares are going to be lower for the foreseeable future, and airlines are mobile - and if there's a stimulus there that says there's less cost, we're more likely to put more traffic in".

He also hit out at proposed bailouts for state carriers, such as Lufthansa.

He said in the short-term "it's about stimulus here and if you lower taxes for example at airports, you will reward those airlines that deliver traffic.

"If you deliver traffic you incentivise tourism, you create jobs, you get people to secondary airports.

"In places like southern Spain, southern Italy, Greece they depend on airlines like Ryanair to deliver passengers in huge volumes throughout the summer, and also in the shoulder seasons, to create jobs.

"If we could get a break on those, I think that would be a far better use of government funds.

"We do point-to-point travel, whereas competing with the likes of Lufthansa and Air France and a lot of their routes it's hubbing and spoking - which people will not want to do.

"People will want to go through one airport, not through two airports".

Aviation sector needs help now - Ryanair CEO

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

    

The taskforce is to look at recovery conditions for the sector.

The Government says it will examine the experience of other countries in opening borders, and monitor the effectiveness of measures to control any resumption of COVID-19 growth.

The Departments of Transport and Health will agree new protocols that should be applied to promote health and virus control.

A code of practice is expected to be finalised and published in the coming weeks.

While close engagement will continue with both State-owned and non-State owned parts of the industry.

And support measures are also to be considered in consultation with the Department of Public Expenditure.

This will consider what supports may be needed to facilitate the return of a strong aviation industry.

Main image: A flight information board displaying cancelled flights at the Gdansk Lech Walesa Airport in Poland. Picture by: SOPA Images/SIPA USA/PA Images

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Airlines Aviation Aviation Taskforce Eddie Wilson Measures Recovery Ryanair CEO Tourism

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