Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

08.55 1 Jul 2020


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The CEO of Ryanair is calling for overseas travel to be allowed, claiming Ireland isn't going to be "some COVID-free Tír na nÓg" if a blanket ban continues.

Eddie Wilson has said he disagrees with Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan's stance on travel, claiming it's "completely disproportionate".

Dr Holohan has said he's "beyond nervous" about any increase in foreign travel, and has urged people to reconsider any summer holidays they have booked.

It comes despite plans by the Government to soon release a 'green list' of countries deemed safe to travel.

Ryanair is operating 40% of its schedule across Europe from today - and the airline's CEO suggests Ireland is one of the only European countries still saying 'we're closed for business'.

Speaking on Newstalk Breakfast, Mr Wilson said the current situation is just causing "wholesale confusion" for people.

Ireland won't be 'COVID-free Tír na nÓg' with blanket travel ban - Ryanair CEO

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

   

He said: "We're going to have to live with this over the next number of years - balance public health with growing an economy again.

"But a blanket ban, saying that somehow or other we're going to be some COVID-free Tír na nÓg, isn't actually going to work."

Mr Wilson warned that no flights into the country will also have a serious impact on jobs and the tourism industry.

He said airlines don't have a 'bottomless pit of money', and that they need to plan ahead as it's expensive to move people around.

He said: "The Government should come out and direct policy.

"They should show some leadership and say we're open for business, and we should allow people to move freely in-and-out of Ireland, particularly from Europe."

Main image: File photo of Ryanair plane. Picture by: Peter Byrne/PA Wire/PA Images

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