Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport Timmy Dooley has questioned whether the Labour Party was ever taking seriously the concerns around the possible sale of the State’s shareholding in Aer Lingus after it was indicated the Cabinet would only make its decision when it knew the intentions of Ryanair.
Deputy Dooley said the comments attributed to Tánaiste Joan Burton “exposed the lack of genuine concern within the Labour Party about maintaining a strategic national interest in Aer Lingus.”
Deputy Dooley said, “It is very disappointing to hear that Labour and the Cabinet are prepared to take their cue on Aer Lingus from Ryanair. Not only is Ryanair a competitor of Aer Lingus it is a major shareholder and will make its decisions based on commercial interest not national interest. The Labour Party should be making its decisions as part of the Government in the long-term interests of the country and shouldn’t be waiting to a get a steer on what direction it should go from Ryanair.
“The future of the State’s shareholding in Aer Lingus and the long-term economic considerations should not be guided by a rival airline with a vested interest. Either the Government has genuine concerns or it doesn’t. What Ryanair’s intentions are should be irrelevant to those concerns if they are genuinely held.”