Newly elected Kerry County Councillor Jackie Healy-Rae has released a statement today which states his belief that a flight route from Kerry Airport to Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport could the key to Kerry’s economic growth.

The youngest elected Healy-Rae said “We are very fortunate in Kerry to have our own airport in the heart of the county, Farranfore must be one of the most unique villages in Western Europe, it has an airport, a train station and a good road network out of every side of it, but, unfortunately I believe this is being extremely under-utilised by our own Local Authority and our Government. This current Government should be encouraging and doing everything possible to grow regional airports such as Kerry instead of adding another runway to the likes of Dublin.”

Jackie went on to say that “If we are serious about creating more business opportunities and attracting a new tourism market, we need to connect ourselves to the world and we have a way of doing that, create an International PSO from Kerry Airport to Schipol Airport, Amsterdam. By doing this, you have right way opened yourself to over 200 worldwide destinations. 71 million people travelled through Schipol Airport in 2018 and by having a well market route to Kerry, we could be getting our fair share of this and adding to the 2.3 million visitors we had to Kerry in 2018. Also, we would be opening our county to a new worldwide market base which will be key in the face of Brexit, we need to encourage new microbusiness to come to our towns, such as Castleisland, Tralee, Listowel and Killarney and even expanding on business parks such as 4 Park in Farranfore.

Healy-Rae finishes up his statement by saying “This is an opportunity that has for far too long gone unrecognised and while I am glad following on from my father Michael Healy-Rae raising it in the Dáil and getting a favourable answer that the Government are indeed looking at the feasibility of it, I do not believe it is getting the serious attention that it warrants, but, it is crucial to the future economic stability of our county, nobody knows what will happen when Brexit comes, so we have to be ready to search further afield than our neighbours, tourism figures from Britain are already back, tourism is our bread and butter in Kerry, without it we face huge job losses and a sustained decrease in our economy.”