Fingal Dublin Chamber calls on Government to support Dublin Airport capital projects
Responding to the news that the daa is currently losing €1m per day due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Fingal Dublin Chamber is calling on the Government to support crucial capital investments.
Fingal Dublin Chamber Chief Executive, Anthony Cooney, said:
“Dublin Airport has experienced extraordinary growth in recent years and they were enjoying a positive start to the year before the sharp fall in recent months. While normal operations may be temporarily halted as our society and economy sustained the shocking blows of the Covid-19, there is also a need to plan for the recovery.
There’s a quote by Nicholas Haralambous, "Plan in decades. Think in years. Work in months. Live in days." As we continue to live day by day during these challenging times and work towards the phased reopening of our economy in the months ahead; we must also think of the future which is not so distant. Building key pieces of national infrastructure to meet the projected requirements require significant lead-in time, so we must now prepare for our needs in the years and decades ahead.
In 2005, Dublin Airport lodged plans for a new runway which they envisaged would come on stream in 2010 at a cost of €130 million. Due to recession, this project was pushed back and it is now set to be delivered in 2021 for a total of €320 million. The new North Runway will be a massive economic asset for our country and will be very much welcomed. However, was it not for the lack of support during the financial crisis, the runway would have been operational a decade ago and come in at half the ultimate price. As a major cost reduction programme is underway at Dublin Airport it is crucial that the Government steps up to support infrastructure projects so decisions made today do not negatively constrain our future.
According to research, Dublin Airport supports or facilitates almost 130,000 jobs in the Republic of Ireland and contributes a total of €9.8 billion in Gross Value Added (GVA) to the Irish economy, which is equivalent to more than 3% of the national economy. While the outputs are felt across the country, Fingal benefits greatly from the Airport’s economic contribution in areas such as tourism, trade and investment.
Before the crisis, Dublin Airport had flights to more than 190 destinations in 42 countries operated by almost 50 airlines, making it the tenth-largest airport in the European Union. While Covid-19 has resulted in an unprecedented drop in passenger numbers, we cannot be complacent about planning for future growth when consumer confidence returns.
We are calling on the next Government to support the delivery of capital projects associated with Dublin Airport such as essential upgrade works and MetroLink.”