2020 the most challenging year in airports history as a result of Covid-19 pandemic
Ireland West Airport has been allocated funding of €1,353,859 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, 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.
Minister of State for Transport, Ms Hildegarde Naughton TD, said, "I fully recognise the devastating impact that the current crisis has had on our regional airports. This funding will go some way towards helping our regional airports remain financially sustainable as they plan for a time beyond the grip of Covid-19.
"In addition to today’s funding, I also announced further supports for these airports on November 10 when Government agreed to a revised supports package of €80m for Irish aviation. As part of that announcement, in order to safeguard the viability of these airports, Donegal, Kerry and Knock will be eligible to receive up to €6m in supplementary supports next year to make good the impacts of Covid in 2020."