Shannon region may lose €58m due to grounding of Boeing 737 Max

Grounding of the Boeing aircraft has resulted in the loss of 13 services per week at Shannon

Shannon airport’s passenger numbers will be down this year after six years of growth

Shannon airport’s passenger numbers will be down this year after six years of growth

 

The grounding of Boeing 737 Max aircraft will cost the Shannon region about €58 million this year, according to the acting chief executive of Shannon Group Mary Considine.

She told a special meeting of Clare Council Council on Monday that the loss of 120,000 passengers from three services affected by the Boeing Max grounding would end six years of passenger growth at Shannon airport.

Ms Considine said that passenger numbers at Shannon have increased 34 per cent since separation from the DAA, but said that the loss to the region as a result of the Boeing Max grounding would be “huge”.

The grounding of the Boeing Max has resulted in the axing of two services by Norwegian Airlines to the US, and one Air Canada service to Toronto for 2019.

Ms Considine told the meeting that the grounding of the Boeing aircraft has resulted in the loss of 13 services per week at Shannon.

Transatlantic passenger numbers have increased by 48 per cent at Shannon since separation from the DAA, and Ms Considine said it has been disproportionately affected by the Boeing Max 737 issue as the airport was more reliant on the US. “They are the facts and the hard reality because you can’t replace those services overnight.”

Ms Considine told the meeting that Shannon airport does not get any Government support even those it is eligible under EU rules. She said “a lack of support is curtailing our ability to fund other projects and address historic under-investment”.

The chief executive of Clare County Council, Pat Dowling, told the meeting that “the dominance of Dublin airport cannot be allowed to spell the death-knell of Shannon”.

At the meeting the Shannon Group was criticised by a number of councillors for not marketing the airport at the successful staging of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open in Lahinch.

In response, Ms Considine said it would have loved to have been involved in marketing at the Irish Open “but our budgets didn’t allow that”.