DAA chief to attend summit on Cork Airport debt

The head of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) has agreed to attend a crisis summit on Cork Airport with Fine Gael TDs this week.

Cork North West TD Áine Collins, who requested the meeting, broke ranks with her party colleagues last night and confirmed she will be asking DAA chairman Pádraig Ó Ríordáin “to park” Cork Airport’s debt.

The legacy debt issue, associated with the construction of its terminal building a decade ago, has been blamed for an alarming decline in passenger numbers through Cork in the last 12 months.

Ms Collins’s stance is in direct contrast to that of Fine Gael Minister Simon Coveney, and of other Fine Gael TDs in Cork, who say the airport’s debt issue is being over-stated.

However, Ms Collins said:

“The debt is strangling the airport and preventing it from competing on a like-for-like footing with the likes of Shannon Airport.

“We are haemorrhaging routes and flights as it is too expensive for airlines to consider Cork as a viable route, even though the airport can offer airlines access to over 1.2m people in the Munster region.

"If Cork Airport isn’t making money, we’ll never pay back the debt. It’s losing revenue when flights and routes are lost. We need to park the debt, give Cork Airport autonomy and drive its business growth, working with businesses and tourism bodies in the region to promote Cork and the airport.”

The meeting with Mr Ó Riordáin, who also heads up the Cork Airport Development Council, is due to take place in Leinster House on Wednesday.

DISCOVER MORE CONTENT LIKE THIS

More on this topic

Norwegian Airline flights suspended at Cork Airport for remainder of summer

Cork Airport expecting 55,000 passengers over June Bank Holiday weekend

Chaos when passengers used emergency exits to get off plane at Cork Airport, report states

Daa plans €40m development spend for Cork Airport over next four years


Lifestyle

John McCarthy gives standout performance but Evening Train takes safe route

The Currabinny cooks celebrate the courgette

Cork city in the rare oul’ times

What next for Madonna?

More From The Irish Examiner