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Aviation Industry

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 1 June 2021

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Ceisteanna (227)

Seán Canney

Ceist:

227. Deputy Seán Canney asked the Minister for Transport his plans to support the aviation industry in the regions in order to ensure international connectivity for the regions; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29357/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Transport)

The Government is acutely aware of the devastating impact that COVID-19 restrictions are having on the aviation sector and from the outset has sought to ensure that the aviation industry is in a position to rebound quickly when the public health situation allows. Government supports for the airports, airlines and companies in the aviation sector have been provided throughout this crisis. By the end of June 2021, the sector will have received approx. €300 million in State funding spanning employment supports, waiver of commercial rates and deferral of taxes. The bulk of the support to airlines is through the TWSS/EWSS wage subsidy schemes which were specifically designed to maintain the link between employers and employees. Liquidity support has also been made available by ISIF to large aviation enterprises.

In November 2020, in recognition of the very difficult circumstances facing the aviation sector, the Government agreed a revised funding package of €80 million specifically for Irish aviation in 2021. As part of this package, €21 million is being provided under the Regional Airports Programme (2021-2025) this year.  This gives funding certainty to Donegal, Kerry and Ireland West Airports and also supports the PSO services on the Donegal/ Dublin and Kerry/Dublin air routes. In addition, €32 million is being provided to Cork and Shannon airports through a new one-year Covid-19 regional State airports programme. A €26 million Irish state aid scheme to compensate airport operators for the losses caused by Covid-19 and the travel restrictions imposed by Ireland to limit its spread. The scheme will augment the supports already in place and help the industry to maintain connectivity and make a recovery from the impacts of Covid-19.

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