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Tag Archives: IAG

McNamara hopes to run again for Labour

  Clare Deputy Michael McNamara hopes to run for the Labour Party in the next General Election, despite his expulsion from the parliamentary party. The East Clare TD was the only Coalition deputy to vote against the proposed sale of the State’s 25.1 per cent stake in Aer Lingus to International Airlines Group (IAG) on Thursday. The barrister and part-time farmer remains a member of the Labour Party and says he will still support Labour Party policies during future Dáil votes. He still wants to run as a Labour candidate in Clare at the next General Election, if he is selected at the party’s selection convention. However, if he  doesn’t secure a place on the Labour Party ticket, he wouldn’t rule out running as an independent candidate. The Aer Lingus motion passed by 74 votes to 51 with Fianna Fáil, Sinn Féin and most other opposition deputies opposing the sale. McNamara was the only government deputy to vote down the …

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Dáil votes to sell State’s shares in Aer Lingus

The Dáil has voted to sell the Government’s 25.1% stake in Aer Lingus to airline group IAG. Seventy four TDs voted in favour of the sale and 51 against. Labour TD for Clare Michael McNamara was the only Government TD to vote against the move. Deputy McNamara had said earlier in the day that he would not support the Government’s motion as selling the shares was “a gamble.” The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe TD, welcomed the Dáil’s approval of the General Principles of the disposal of the State’s minority shareholding in Aer Lingus to IAG, saying it is in the best interest of the company, the country and Ireland’s connectivity. “Dáil approval of the motion before it today allows for the disposal of the State’s minority shareholding in Aer Lingus to IAG. In the event that this sale transaction proceeds as agreed with IAG, we will see the creation of jobs within our economy, enhancement of …

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McNamara to exit Labour Parliamentary Party

Clare Labour TD, Michael McNamara will not support a Government motion in the Dáil this afternoon to sell the State’s 25.1% stake in Aer Lingus to IAG. Deputy McNamara’s refusal to support the government in the vote will lead to automatic expulsion from Labour’s parliamentary party. Suggesting in the Dáil today (Thursday) the IAG takeover is “a gamble he’s not prepared to support” he added, “Shannon’s current business level is no guarantee that services would not be cut in the future”. “I’m not prepared to gamble with what I believe is key to the economic development of this state, all of this state. I don’t have confidence in these guarantees at the moment as they stand. On that basis Minister [Donohoe], I regret that I will not be able to support you in this afternoon’s motion,” Deputy McNamara stated.

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Division over Aer Lingus Sale

CLARE’S five Government Oireachtas members are divided over the possible implications of the decision to press ahead with the €1.4 billion sale of Aer Lingus to International Airlines Group (IAG). Furthermore, Fianna Fáil’s Timmy Dooley has added a twist to the debate in claiming the Irish Government might have no option but to sue IAG if the Aer Lingus Heathrow slots are sold. Fianna Fáil said it will table a Private Notice Question in the Dáil on Thursday, in a bid to suspend the proposed vote to sell off the national stake in Aer Lingus. The move follows the emergence of a report prepared by aviation consultants Nyras for Aer Lingus, in which the company sets out a range of cost reductions across the airline, including a proposal to outsource part of aircraft maintenance to Eastern Europe. The Government is recommending the sale of the State’s 25.1% stake, worth €335million, in Aer Lingus to IAG and put a motion to …

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IAG to consider code-share at Shannon

International Airline Group (IAG) will consider options, including Aer Lingus codeshare and accepting customers originating from Shannon that could enhance the existing all-business British Airways two daily service from Heathrow to JFK via Shannon, Transport Minister, Paschal Donohoe said in the Dáil this morning Wednesday. In opening the debate on the proposed sale of the Government’s 25% stake in Aer Lingus, Minister Donohoe said the airline’s Shannon flights to Boston and New York are expected to be strengthened as a result of the company becoming part of the North Atlantic Joint Business. “Aer Lingus support for existing American Airlines flights to Philadelphia will provide opportunities for additional capacity and increased connectivity to the US,” he said. According to Ministe Donohoe, “The financial advisers have considered a range of different valuation methodologies which they consider to be relevant. The [Inter-depertmental]Steering Group has concluded that a price of €2.50 is acceptable. The Dáil is being asked to approve in principle the disposal …

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BREAKING: US and Heathrow sweeteners for Shannon in IAG deal

WITH the Government this evening announcing the sale of the State’s stake in Aer Lingus, a Fine Gael source this evening told the Clare Champion that Shannon-US services will be enhanced as a result of the transaction. It is understood that British Airways (which is owned by IAG) will continue to use Shannon’s US  Customs and Border Protection pre-clearance facilities, and in the future it may actually pick up passengers at Shannon, effectively extending the range of US services from Shannon, something that would be welcomed by local business interests. While IAG CEO Willie Walsh had previously ruled out increasing a five year commitment to maintaining Shannon-Heathrow connectivity, this will be increased to seven years. It is understood the assurances have calmed at least some political nerves in Clare, but the issue is still set to provoke local and national debate in the coming days. The chairman of Shannon Group plc, Rose Hynes, has  welcomed the proposed IAG takeover of …

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Councillors meet Transport Minister over Aer Lingus

A delegation of County Councillors from the West of Ireland met with Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Pascal Donohue, T.D., in Dublin this afternoon to express their concerns about the proposed sale of Aer Lingus to IAG. The meeting was organised by Councillor John Crowe, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council who was joined in Leinster House by Damien Ryan, Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council and Michael Fitzgerald , Cathaoirleach of Tipperary County Council. While unable to attend this afternoon’s meeting, the Mayors of Limerick, Galway and Kerry have also backed the message delivered to the Minister which outlined that elected members in the West rejected any commitment from IAG that does not “explicitly guarantee” Aer Lingus’ long term commitment to services between Shannon Airport and London Heathrow, as well as transatlantic services. “At today’s meeting we stressed the necessity of securing a 15-year guarantee from IAG in respect of Shannon’s Heathrow slots and service levels as the 5-year guarantee …

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Aer Lingus chair and CEO have questions to answer

The chairman of the Oireachtas Transport and Communications Committee has been requested to invite Aer Lingus chairman, Colm Barrington and its CEO, Christoph Mueller to appear before the committee. Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport, Timmy Dooley said they should appear before the committee to answer the questions that remain outstanding surrounding connectivity following the IAG presentation last week. Deputy Dooley commented, “Both Mr Barrington and Mr Mueller need to address the serious concerns that have been raised by those involved in the tourism sector who recognise the importance of our connectivity to the United States and Heathrow. The current links are also of fundamental importance for the pharmaceutical industry in the Cork region and for the engineering and financial services sector in the west of Ireland. “The significant concerns that have been raised regarding the potential downside risks of the proposed takeover bid remain outstanding. The proposal to retain the Heathrow slots as outlined by Willie Walsh earlier …

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