In the meantime the Irish government had been reported as wanting to not adopt the digital passport this Summer . Although we still do not know what freedom that will give if it is adopted anyway.
Coalition wanted to shut out travel for tourist season with jab passport delay
The Government tried to block attempts to open up foreign travel during the summer tourist season.http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/co ... 22401.html
This sounds like it lost the battle, but of course, it will no doubt find new ways to frustrate travel plans. The need for vaccine passports could have been foreseen a year ago (at least); the technology can't b THAT difficult; it's really just another excuse.
God only knows what the waiting list for new passports will be when they finally get to issue new ones and somehow I doubt that they'll be in any hurry to get through the list! I wonder if the EU will have to speak to them about this too, but I doubt this will achieve much.
I can see things reaching a point where airlines get so cheesed off about the Irish government's attitude and policy towards transport that they wind down services and not return until they receive specific assurances as to how any future similar situation might be handled.
I sense that with the message sent by the EU to the government, there is an increasing impatience towards Ireland. Whether this translates into anything meaningful, I don't know. I sense no urgency at govt level. The airline industry issued a new report yesterday, supported by EI, to get aviation moving again; if the govt pays it the slightest attention, I'll be surprised. The problem is manifold:
- short term thinking (they fail to realise that in order to pay for the damage that Covid had caused, they will need aviation to be a big part of that; if they nobble it and undermine its ability to be an effective contributor to growth, and annoy the carriers actually providing service, they will seriously lengthen the amount of time it takes to recover from this;
- lack of leadership. if,as they say, 80% of the population will be vaccinated by July and the most vulnerable are protected; if antigen testing is widely and cheaply available; if everyone still wears masks, then they will have covered almost all of the precautions necessarily to permit flying to happen again. It won't remove the threat entirely, but it will go a long way to doing so. There needs to be a point where people in govt accept that you're not going to get rid of Covid entirely. You take all reasonable precautions, such as protecting the elderly and have robust policies and we should be able to re-start. The problem is that the govt is not in control and does not have a long term strategy. If there were a mechanism for the EU to take direct control of the Irish response, I would support it, but there isn't.
The trouble is that we have the perfect storm of obstacles to a quick emergence from this disaster: poor leadership, an unwillingness to lead, excessive power given to unelected groups, failure to understand the long term consequences of an island nation with an open economy nobbling its airline industry and finally, to cap it all, a transport minister who is openly hostile to aviation.