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[February 12, 2013]
Ryanair To Appeal Any EU Prohibition
(M2 PressWIRE Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Ryanair, Europes favourite airline, was notified this morning (12 Feb) at a State of Play meeting with the EU Commission, that the EU Commission intends to prohibit Ryanairs offer for Aer Lingus, despite the fact that Ryanair has met every competition concern raised in the EUs Statement of Objections and during the review process, including providing the EU at its request with irrevocable commitments from not one, but two, upfront buyers to eliminate all competitive overlaps between Ryanair and Aer Lingus. IAG has committed that they would take over divestments of Ryanairs and Aer Lingus entire London-Gatwick operations, and Flybe has committed to take over 43 Aer Lingus UK and European routes.
Given that the EU Commission recently approved IAGs acquisition of BMI at London-Heathrow on the basis of three year commitments, the EUs claim that it could not be satisfied of IAGs and Flybes commitments to these Irish routes after three years is another example of the EU holding Ryanair to a much higher standard than any other EU airline. Ryanairs remedies package is unprecedented. For the first time in EU airline history, Ryanair delivered not one, but two, substantial upfront EU airline buyers who have agreed to come to Ireland to compete against a combined Ryanair/Aer Lingus.
Ryanair has today instructed its lawyers to appeal any prohibition decision to the European Courts.
Ryanairs Robin Kiely said: It appears clear from this mornings meeting, that no matter what remedies Ryanair offered, we were not going to get a fair hearing and were going to be prohibited regardless of competition rules.
Given Ryanairs remedies package clearly addresses every issue raised in the EUs Statement of Objections, any decision to prohibit would be manifestly unfair and in contravention of EU competition rules. Ryanair has no alternative but to appeal any prohibition decision and we expect to get a fair hearing at the European Courts, as we havent received one from Commissioner Almunia and his case team. This decision is clearly a political one to meet the narrow, vested interests of the Irish Government and is not based on competition law.
For further information please contact: Joe Carmody Robin Kiely Edelman Ryanair Tel. +353-1-6789333 Tel. +353-1-8121212 Karin OConor, Corporate Communications, Edelman 5th Floor, Huguenot House, 35-38 St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2 T: 00 353 (0) 1 678 9333 M: 00 353 86 1651068 F: 00 353 (0) 1 662 9948 www.edelman.ie About Edelman Edelman is the worlds largest independent public relations firm, with offices in 63 cities and 4,200 employees worldwide, as well as affiliates in more than 30 cities. Edelman was named Advertising Ages top-ranked PR firm of the decade and one of its 2010 A-List Agencies and 2010 Best Places to Work; PRWeeks 2011 Large PR Agency of the Year and 2011 Large UK Consultancy of the Year; European Excellence Awards 2010 Agency of the Year; Holmes Reports 2011 Global Agency of the Year, Agency of the Decade and 2009 Asia Pacific Consultancy of the Year; and among Glassdoors top five 2011 Best Places to Work. Edelman owns specialty firms Blue (advertising), StrategyOne (research), Ruth (brands +experiences), DJE Science (medical education/publishing and science communications), and MATTER (sports, sponsorship, and entertainment). Visithttp://www.edelman.com for more information.
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