Regional groups hail independence from Dublin authority

Mid-West business bodies have welcomed a decision to give Shannon Airport full independence from the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA).

The Shannon, Ennis, and Limerick chambers of commerce, along with Ibec and the American Chamber, said a sustainable business model was now essential.

In a joint statement, the organisations said: “Independence from the DAA gives the airport’s management team the freedom and ability to drive passenger growth and develop routes to key international hubs, as well as tourist destinations, in a competitive market-driven way. “This announcement will allow Shannon to return to its grass roots as an innovative profitable entity.”

They said the airport was a “national strategic asset” and played a vital role in the maintenance and enhancement of the Mid-West’s economic development.

“It underpins our very large multinational manufacturing and traded services sectors, supports tourism development and provides access for indigenous Irish companies to their customers and suppliers worldwide.

“The new management team must implement a viable business strategy to transform Shannon into a competitive and sustainable airport.”

Clare County Council, meanwhile, said it was “ready, willing and able” to assist with plans for the future development of the facility.

Tom Coughlan, county manager, said: “The council is particularly satisfied the airport is being granted independence in relation to its future operation and that the newly created entity will drive the sustainable development of the surrounding landbank, as envisioned in the Clare County Development Plan 2011-2017.”

The former Mayor of Shannon, Senator Tony Mulcahy, described the decision as momentous for the airport and the region.

“The placing of the landbank around Shannon Airport under the remit of the new airport management structure will contribute immeasurably to the growth of the Shannon Free Zone.”


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