19 NOVEMBER 2012
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The protracted takeover of Aer Lingus by the majority shareholder Ryanair continues, with the airline run by Michael O’Leary seemingly confident that it will eventually gain control of what is still the state airline of Ireland.
Ryanair has confirmed that discussions continue with the European Commission regarding a radical package of remedies by the airline designed to address the Commission’s competition concerns.
It says that some 40 routes are involved to/from Dublin, Cork and Shannon where competition could be introduced. British Airways has confirmed it is in discussion and Flybe is also thought to be drawn in. Following receipt of the Commission’s statement of objections, a standard procedural step in Phase II EU merger reviews, Ryanair expects that the Commission will shortly market test a transformational remedies package.
At a more mundane level Ryanair continues as Europe’s most annoying airline (which is more honest than its claim to be the cheapest airline) introducing a £6 per person admin fee for each sector from 1 December. It will be quoted in the headline price. Until now, customers who took out a Ryanair Cash Passport MasterCard could avoid the charge, which would add £48 to the cost of booking a return journey for a family of four. www.ryanair.com
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