1966 marked thirty years since the transformation of Rineanna into Shannon Airport began. This transformation made the Shannon area one of the showpieces of Ireland.
Since its establishment as the world's first Duty Free airport in 1947, Shannon has had its ups and downs.
Along with the development of the airport came the development of Shannon as a place to live with the emergence of suburban housing and the services that go with it. Jim Fahy asks
But what indeed is the future of Shannon?
To find out more Jim Fahy speaks to Joe Quigley, General Manager of Shannon Development. Quigley outlines the amount of state investment that has gone into Shannon Industrial Estate to date. He also comments on the pay-offs of this investment, the benefits of employment, the facilitation of exports and the influx of foreign direct investment.
Fahy also speaks to Franz Wesselink Deputy Manager of the Rippon Dutch piano factory about the foreign perception of Shannon and its attractiveness for investment. The Rippon Company is just one of the twenty eight firms now operating in Shannon. Wesselink outlines why his firm decided to come to Ireland in the first place and points to the availability of labour as a key factor in the decision to set up in Ireland. Shannon was chosen as the company could import raw materials without import duty along with tax advantages and government grants. In relation to the adaptation of Irish labour Wesselink comments
We have found that the Irish boy without experience in industry can adapt himself quickly to the circumstances in a factory.
A 'Late Extra' report by Jim Fahy broadcast on 5 September 1966. This report is partly mute.