The head of Dublin Airport operator DAA has said a new planning application is to be submitted 'in a number of weeks' to increase the passenger cap at the airport.
Kenny Jacobs was speaking as the CEO of Aer Lingus expressed frustration at current passenger constraints.
Lynne Embleton said the Irish flag carrier could move more business to the UK in response.
Mr Jacobs told The Anton Savage Show restricted capacity is likely in the short-term.
"We have a planning cap on Dublin Airport of 32 million, which we will be close to this year," he said.
"We are looking to potentially a couple of years where we will have restricted capacity growth.
"That's not new news, and I would share the frustrations of the Aer Lingus Chief Executive.
"This is something that we would like to have fixed quickly, so that we can continue to grow because Ireland needs that."
Cap on surface access
Mr Jacobs said the limit is around access to the airport itself.
"It's a restriction that goes back to 2008 and it's based on surface access to Dublin Airport - so the amount of vehicles coming to it," he said.
"It's a planning restriction... we've been trying to change it since 2008, but a few things have gotten in the way.
"It was delayed with the 2008 financial crisis, then you had the COVID pandemic.
"We are getting a new planning application into Fingal County Council in a number of weeks.
"Once that gets approved that will allow us to grow beyond 40 million in the coming decade and beyond."
'Airlines won't wait'
Mr Jacobs said the airport needs to expand now.
"Dublin Airport, just to keep pace with population, would need to be able to have about 36/37 million passengers alone by the year 2030," he said.
"I think we will have two years where it will be difficult for everybody who wants to come to Dublin Airport - I'm talking about airlines - being able to do it.
"If I'd a magic wand I would say if we got planning permission on the 1st of January everything would be great.
"I think it's likely to take two years.
"I think we'll be looking at two years of managing the capacity with some restrictions at Dublin Airport.
"Such is life, we will do that.
"The risk to Ireland with this is the airlines just won't say, 'OK that suits us, we'll wait', they will take capacity elsewhere.
"Elsewhere won't be to other Irish airports in reality, it'll be places like Manchester and Edinburgh.
"That means we'll be losing jobs," he added.
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