Ireland West Airport welcomes today’s announcement of funding of €1,353,859 for the airport under the annual Public Policy Remit Operational Expenditure Subvention (PPR-O) Scheme for 2020.
The Programme provides for Exchequer support to contribute towards the significant operational costs associated with air traffic control, fire, safety and security at the airport.
Arthur French, Chairman of the airport, welcoming today’s announcement said ‘We wish to acknowledge Minister Eamon Ryan, TD and Minister Hildegarde Naughton, TD for the continued support received from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport in awarding this funding to the airport. We also wish to thank our local public representatives and Local Authority stakeholders for their ongoing support for the airport through this unprecedented period. This funding will serve to go part of the way to subventing the close to €4m losses the airport is forecasting this year as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. We also await further positive developments following Government’s recent announcement of additional operational funding for regional airports as part of the Aviation recovery Programme’.
2020 has proven to be the most challenging year in the airports history as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic which has seen a complete collapse in passenger traffic from a record high of 807,000 passengers in 2019 to an estimated 145,000 passengers in 2020 – an 82% decline and a passenger level last experienced in 1995.
Fianna Fáil Senator for Roscommon/Galway Eugene Murphy has welcomed the allocation saying “Ireland West Airport Knock is a vital life link for the west and north west region from both a business and tourism point of view. It provides an essential connection to global markets for regional businesses and also provides a gateway for much needed tourists and in attracting foreign direct investment into the region. It is most welcome that the Government has allocated an additional €1.3 million for Airport Knock, €1.5 million for Kerry Airport and €580,617 for Donegal airport,” said Senator Murphy