Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary yesterday expressed confidence in his airline’s ability to assuage regulators’ concerns over its latest bid for rival Aer Lingus.
The European Commission is due to decide by 14 January whether to clear or block the takeover after announcing last week that it will carry out a full review into the deal.
The budget airline responded by saying its €694 million (£550m) offer for Aer Lingus had lapsed as a result of the move and it would launch a fresh approach if regulators give it the go-ahead.
O’Leary said he was confident that Ryanair could deliver a package of remedies to address the EC’s belief that a takeover could reduce competition because the two airlines are the only operators serving many routes out of Dublin.
He added: “There are 46 cross-over routes and we will remedy all of them by getting airlines to come to Dublin and take them over.”
Ryanair, which already owns 29.82 per cent of Aer Lingus, saw its first approach blocked by the EC in 2007, while it withdrew a subsequent bid in 2009.
O’Leary also said Ryanair was seeking no more than a 24.9 per cent stake in Stansted airport, which has been put up for sale by BAA, and was in talks with “a number of potential bidders” who want the airline involved in a consortium bid.
Meanwhile, Airbus said yesterday that it expects the number of passenger planes to more than double to 32,550 by 2031 to cope with rising global demand. It said China is the biggest market for new aircraft.
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Weather for Edinburgh
Saturday 18 May 2013
Temperature: 8 C to 12 C
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Wind direction: East
Temperature: 9 C to 17 C
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