8 October 2015
By Bryan T. Smyth
Cork County Council today confirmed that it has committed €100,000 to support a ‘cooperative marketing programme’ with Cork Airport aimed at increasing inbound tourist numbers.
County Mayor Cllr. John Paul O’Shea said that “Cork Airport is on the crest of a wave with recent route announcements demonstrating that it is the natural gateway to the South of Ireland for visitors and business’s. This significant commitment of funding from Cork County Councils Economic Development Fund aims to maximise the return for the entire Cork region from the recently announced Tourism Ireland Cooperative Marketing Fund for regions outside of Dublin. This is an opportunity not to be missed at such a positive time for the future of our Airport and region”
The Cooperative Marketing fund was recently announced by the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Pascal Donohoe and provides a fund of €1m for distribution to regions outside of Dublin based on a competitive bid process. It is expected that decisions on the fund allocations will be made later this month and regions which demonstrate strong cooperative approaches to regional tourism marketing are expected to be strongly supported.
Cork County Council Chief Executive Tim Lucey said that “Cork County Council recognises the significant opportunity that is now presented through recent route development announcements for Cork Airport. Our early commitment of support to Cork Airport, particularly following the significance of direct flights to the US, demonstrates the type of leadership required to support business and tourism development in Cork and recognises that this may be a once off opportunity which must be successful. Cork, across all sectors, must now respond and make a particular effort to replicate the confidence which new and existing airlines are showing in Cork.”
Since the launch of the Wild Atlantic Way and Ireland’s Ancient East as key brand propositions for the international marketing of Ireland, Cork County Council has been to the forefront in developing both products with Failte Ireland.
The Chairman of the Council’s Tourism Strategic Policy Committee, Cllr. Alan Coleman said that “Cork is the gateway to the south of Ireland and is the only point of access in the country to the start of both the Wild Atlantic Way and Ireland’s Ancient East and this ensures that we have a natural differentiating advantage upon which to build a compelling tourism and business reason to come to Cork. Cork Airport is the natural gateway and the tourism policy of the County Council is to maximise this opportunity through building our brand so that we can significantly increase our share of visitors to our shores, wherever they land.”
It is expected that this cooperative approach supported by the Council could potentially deliver a seven figure marketing programme through supportive funding from the national fund, other local stakeholders and airline carriers.