Ross denies there's 'universal opposition' to third airport terminal
Transport Minister Shane Ross has insisted there is not "universal opposition" to a third terminal at Dublin Airport.
Pressed during Dáil questioning as to why a third terminal at the airport is being considered when airlines such as Aer Lingus and Ryanair are opposed to it, Mr Ross insisted the proposal is not being objected to by all stakeholders.
The DAA, the semi-State company that operates Dublin Airport, has also voiced its opposition to a third terminal in the short to medium term.
"I am not aware that there is universal opposition to the proposal," Mr Ross told the Dáil after being questioned by Sinn Féin TD Imelda Munster.
A recently published report prepared for the Government has suggested a new terminal could be required at Dublin Airport as early as 2030.
Passenger numbers at the airport have soared in recent years, and will surpass 30 million this year.
It has benefited from a significant expansion in its route network and its emergence as a hub airport for travel to North America.
But the DAA has said it doesn't need a new terminal until passenger numbers hit about 55 million a year - a figure that won't be reached until about 2038, according to chief executive Dalton Philips.
The Department of Transport will also consider whether a third terminal at Dublin should be privately operated, something trade union Siptu is strenuously opposed to.
"What we are doing at present is consulting on the basis of this report, which makes various suggestions as to whether or not to have an independent terminal," said Mr Ross.