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Shannon targets resilient celeb jet market

Walmart boss Michael Duke, Citigroup's Vikram Pandit and American Express boss Kenneth Chenneault are among the top-ranking US business giants who have flown private jets through Shannon Airport in recent months since the airport introduced its pre-clearance service for travel to the USA.

Hollywood stars have also taken advantage of the new regime, according to sources. Pamela Anderson, Morgan Freeman, Tom Hanks and Mariah Carey have all touched down at the airport, with John Travolta flying his own plane via Shannon.

Shannon is trying to boost its business by targeting niche markets such as the private jet sector.

Last year the airport handled 1,700 corporate jets, which was up 10 per cent on 2009. The airport is now planning to triple numbers over a five-year period as it seeks to become a European hub.

There are approximately 25,000 private aircraft across the globe with 76 jets registered to Irish owners.

Sunday Indo Business