Aviation sector – time for action

 

Sir, – The report by the National Civil Aviation Development Forum (NCADF), Ireland’s Aviation Restart Plan 2021, makes for encouraging reading, coming as it does from such a breadth of industry stakeholders (“Aviation body says quarantine should be replaced”, Business, April 16th).

The report outlines that on March 5th last, the Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan agreed with the NCADF “that the industry and the Government needed to urgently develop an exit strategy from the current Covid-19 restrictions in order to enable recovery for the aviation sector”.

It is regrettable that on the day of publication, the Minister declined to make any public comment of support for the industry. Given that the NCADF is a Government body formed under the Department of Transport, we in the Irish Air Line Pilots’ Association (IALPA) expected that the Minister would take the opportunity to send a clear message to all of those involved in Irish aviation.

There are many clear recommendations in the NCADF report, some of which have been made previously in the Aviation Recovery Taskforce report of July 2020. Many of these recommendations remain unimplemented. The Minister cannot claim that he did not have time to consider what is necessary to support Irish aviation.

The IALPA commend the NCADF report and calls on Government to implement the recommendations urgently to meet the eminently possible date of June 2021 to restart aviation safely. Giving a shot in the arm to the livelihoods of aviation workers and many more besides can prevent another year of lost business to an industry that has been in lockdown continuously for over a year. Time is no longer available. There is a plan; we must act. – Yours, etc,

Capt JOE MAY,

Vice-President – Finance,

Irish Air Line

Pilots’ Association,

Santry,

Dublin 17.