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Tag Archives: Aer Lingus

Uncertainty lingers over Aer Lingus at Shannon

DESPITE sometimes frosty relations, Aer Lingus has long provided Shannon with links to some of the world’s most important airports, including JFK and Heathrow and the implications of its takeover by International Airlines Group (IAG), which was confirmed on Tuesday evening, are going to be watched closely. There are differing views; some worry that being part of the group will lead to the airline pulling back from Shannon services in the long term, while others feel it can provide new opportunities for the Clare airport. IAG issued a statement on Tuesday evening which said, “IAG has received confirmation of the valid acceptance of its offer for Aer Lingus in respect of all the Aer Lingus shares held by the Ryanair Group. Ryanair’s acceptance was a condition of the offer, which is now wholly unconditional as all the conditions have been satisfied.” IAG chief executive Willie Walsh added, “We’d like to welcome Aer Lingus into IAG. It will remain an iconic …

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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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Shannon to Heathrow capacity increased

Shannon Airport’s upward trend got another boost today with the announcement by Aer Lingus that it is to increase capacity on Heathrow by 20%. The airline will restore the Airbus 320 to the service, replacing the A319, which will add 25,000 seats for the winter season alone. Welcoming the announcement, Shannon Group plc CEO, Neil Pakey said, “We have been in communication with Aer Lingus for some time to restore the A320 on the service and are delighted that they have done this. “We have 35 destinations across 11 countries this year and this additional capacity on Heathrow is a real early summer season boost for us and our passengers. It endorses Aer Lingus’ commitment to the region and the airport, following on from their expansion of the Shannon Boston service from a 757 to a 767 aircraft from June to September this year. Mr Pakey said the increase in Heathrow capacity will give Shannon an additional 25,000 seats for …

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Timmy Dooley

Dooley questions Labour’s stance on Aer Lingus

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 …

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Review of airport charges regulations

Transport Minister, Paschal Donohoe has announced the commencement of a major review of the system for regulating airport charges in Ireland. This proved to be a bone of contention for Shannon Airport, where Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary pulled the plug when there was no budge on charges but returned immediately when granted the concession he demanded. Following a procurement process, which attracted bids from a number of Irish and international consultancy firms, Indecon International Economic Consultants have been awarded the contract to conduct the review, which will commence immediately and be completed before the end of the year. The review will involve full consultation with impacted stakeholders and will deliver options and recommendations for the future of airport charges in Ireland. The Minister said he considers it appropriate and timely to carry out a comprehensive review of the airport charges regulatory regime at this time. The current system for regulating airport charges has been in place since 2001. It is intended …

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