Guarantees possible for Shannon

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Senator-Tony-MulcahyFine Gael Senator Tony Mulcahy says he believes a longer term guarantee can be secured from IAG in relation to Shannon Airport’s Heathrow slots and service levels along with “solid commitments” in relation to Aer Lingus’ transatlantic services.

The Shannon-based Senator last week threatened to resign the party whip if the Government sells its 25.1 per cent shareholding in Aer Lingus to IAG on the basis of a five year Heathrow slot guarantee and in the absence of any commitment to future transatlantic services at the Clare airport.

“I made my position clear to Transport Minister Paschal Donoghue and at Wednesday night’s Parliamentary Party meeting and I believe the Government is committed to rebuking any approach for its shareholding in the airline unless certain commitments are introduced as part of IAG’s offer. This includes IAG guaranteeing Shannon Airport’s Heathrow slots for a period greater than the five years offered and a defined commitment in relation to transatlantic services. Any offer from IAG that falls short of this would be simply unpalatable to me and for many senior Government colleagues,” said Senator Mulcahy