Ireland’s airports Need to Act as ‘Brexit-proof’

Exploiting the north European and American economies might help airports such as Cork, its managing director has stated. Along with also a European aviation system has cautioned that a hard Brexit is going to be a tragedy for UK-based airlines, writes Pádraig Hoare.

Cork Airport boss Niall MacCarthy reported the 4 percent increase in passenger figures from November compared to a year ago showed markets to offset a drop in British visitors was functioning.

“November’s increase in passenger numbers at Cork Airport is a positive index of our company objective to improve connectivity and routes in Ireland’s second largest international airport.

“This Brexit-proofs our company by diversifying into new markets in Europe and north America ahead of uncertain times to our nearest source marketplace in britain,” he explained. CSO figures showing that a 6 percent drop in British visitors also showed a 16% boost in visitors between January and October of the year.

More than 14,000 passengers have utilized the transatlantic flight between Providence and Cork in Rhode Island on the US east coast, Cork Airport stated.

“With the launching of Cork’s very first year-round transatlantic route this summer with Norwegian in addition to significant European additions with fresh Airline partners in Swiss, Iberia Express and also Volotea, Cork Airport is actively pursuing growth,” explained Mr MacCarthy.

The director general of these airlines team that the International Air Transport Association (IATA) stated a hard Brexit are a disaster for UK-based airlines.

Alexandre de Juniac stated if traffic rights aren’t negotiated because “it is going to be a disaster for the UK-based carriers because they will not be allowed to land in Europe”.

Mr de Juniac stated he did not think that it could come to that, but stated airlines needed on future rights that were flying by October at the latest.

The IATA in its own prediction for 2018 stated it expected global industry net profit to rise to $38.4bn ($32.5bn), an improvement from the $34.5bn expected net profit in 2017. It said it expected that a 6 percent in passengers worldwide to 4.3 billion, in addition to a 9.5% increase in earnings to $824bn.

The body, which reflects 275 airlines said demand, savings and interest payments will help airlines improve profitability in 2018 despite increasing costs.

Mr de Juniac stated: “These are great times for the global aviation market. Safety performance is strong. We’ve got a clear strategy that’s currently delivering results. More people than ever are now travelling. The demand for air cargo is at its strongest level in more than a decade.

“Employment is growing. Routes are being opened. Airlines are reaching sustainable levels of maturity,” he explained.

He stated that battles remained. “It’s still, though, a challenging company, and we are being challenged on the price front by increasing gas, labor and infrastructure costs,” he explained. Mr de Juniac stated “authorities need to elevate their game” and support the industry.

“To continue to provide on our whole potential, governments need to increase their game — implementing global standards on safety, locating a sensible amount of taxation, providing smarter regulation and construction the cost-efficient infrastructure to accommodate growing demand,” he explained.