Shannon Airport plan for 850 jobs
Commitments for the creation of 850 new jobs have been secured from two Shannon-based companies, as part of plans for an International Aviation Services Centre that will see the separation of Shannon Airport from the Dublin Airport Authority.
The Government has decided to grant Shannon Airport full independence and merge the airport with a restructured Shannon Development to form a new, publicly-owned, commercial entity in 2013.
An independent Shannon Airport combined with the landbank of Shannon Development could "conservatively" generate between 3,000 and 3,500 new direct jobs over the next five years, according to a Government-appointed task force.
This is separate of construction jobs and would revolve around growing air traffic at the airport and establishing an international aviation services centre.
This and other recommendations underpinned the Cabinet’s decision on Monday to approve the separation of Shannon Airport from the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) by the end of this year.
The reorganisation of Shannon Development is expected to happen by July 2013. This will involve the landbank being merged with the airport into a new entity.
The Aviation Business Development Task Force, headed by Bord Gáis chairman Rose Hynes, submitted its report to Government recently. It said it had obtained "specific commitments" from two existing companies in Shannon to expand their employment with the addition of almost 1,000 jobs. It said these jobs were contingent on Shannon's separation from the DAA.
The task force concluded that an independent airport combined with the landbank from Shannon Development could be "successful and sustainable" and "contribute significantly" to the economic development of the midwest.
Shannon Airport currently employs 230 staff directly, while an additional 1,600 work in neighbouring aviation-related businesses.
The task force predicted that the airport could attract up to 2.5 million passengers annually within three to five years. That compares with the 1.5 million expected in 2012.
It said the airport had the potential to attract new airline services by offering a competitive and flexible tariff structure.