Michael O'Leary wants to do away with self-isolation restrictions for visitors to Ireland
O'Leary is eager to get people on planes again.
Ryanair Group CEO Michael O'Leary has called on Ireland to do away with its travel restrictions that will see visitors to the country self-isolate for 14 days after their arrival.
This restriction will also apply to Irish people returning from abroad.
In a statement issued on Wednesday morning, O'Leary called this measure "ineffective," and noted that countries such as Spain and Italy are planning to allow for travel without restrictions from 1 July onwards. This is the date that Ryanair will also begin operating 1,000 daily flights.
O'Leary argued that "further Irish lockdowns make no economic or medical sense," while simultaneously acknowledging that "Ireland has been one of the best EU countries in tackling and defeating the Covid-19 virus."
O'Leary implied that Ireland should follow the lead of countries who have performed worse in managing Covid-19. The statement goes on to say:
"It is unfair on the Irish people that Ireland is now applying the most stringent lockdown measures (as ranked by the Oxford University School of Government), whereas many other EU countries who have not performed as well in tackling Covid-19 have already removed their lockdown travel restrictions...
"Ireland has now more stringent lockdown measures than Spain, France, the UK, and even the USA, which is the country with the worst record on Covid-19."
O'Leary's statement also made the mistaken claim that the restriction would not apply to visitors arriving from the United Kingdom into Ireland.
Speaking last week, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar confirmed that exemptions would only be made for people in transit between Ireland and Northern Ireland.
"We will treat British citizens the same as Irish citizens. There will not be any discrimination if you like, against British citizens. There will an exception for people transiting to and from Northern Ireland. A lot of people transit to Northern Ireland through Dublin and they will be allowed to continue to transit," Varadkar said.
Niall Conroy, an Irish doctor who is serving as the Director of Public Health in the Wide Bay Region of Queensland, said: "Two week mandatory quarantine for arrivals is highly effective way to keep case numbers low once you have less cases than countries where arrivals are coming from.
"I don’t see any other option if we get to single-digit daily cases."
Monday saw Ireland's first day since 21 March without any Covid-19 related deaths. However, yesterday, nine more deaths were confirmed, as well as 37 new cases of the virus.