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Company Watch - Ryanair.

Dec 3, 2007

Ryanair said Friday Nov. 30 it filed its fifth lawsuit in recent weeks in the European Court of First Instance against the European Commission, this time alleging it failed to investigate illegal state aid to Alitalia. According to the LCC, AZ's subsidies included a split-up of the company's assets and operations and an uneven allocation of debt, resulting in a [euro]1.7 billion ($2.51 billion) debt write-off. Ryanair said it called on the EC to investigate this "blatant abuse" of EU competition rules more than two years ago but the EC has failed to do so. The previous four proceedings relate to the EC's alleged failure to act on Ryanair's complaints about government subsidies that benefited Air France (an alleged [euro]1 billion in reduced domestic airport charges), Lufthansa ([euro]100 million related to use of Munich's Terminal 2), Olympic Airways ([euro]500 million in state aid) and Volare Airlines ([euro]20 million write-off of airport debts). Nov 30, 2007

Ryanair lodged yet another case in the European Court of First Instance against the European Commission for failing to act on the LCC's complaint about illegal state aid to Volare, a subsidiary of Alitalia. Ryanair claims the aid consisted of the writeoff of around [euro]20 million in debts owed by Volare to Italian airports and reductions in airport charges and fuel costs in favor of the airline. Ryanair said it initially called on the EC to investigate the allegations two years ago. This is the fourth case Ryanair has lodged this month against the EC in the CFI for failure to act on its complaints about illegal subsidies to flag carriers. The other three cases involve Olympic Airlines, Air France and Lufthansa. Nov 30, 2007

Ryanair said on Thursday Nov. 29 it was suing the European Commission for failing to act on the Irish budget airline's complaint about state aid to Italian carrier Volare, a subsidiary of Alitalia. "The write-off of some EUR20 million euros (USD$29.62 million) of airport debts is a blatant abuse of EU state aid rules, yet the Commission has refused to do anything about this since 2005." Europe's biggest low cost carrier said it was left with no alternative but to challenge the Commission's inaction by lodging a case with the European Court of First Instance. The move is the fourth legal action by Ryanair against the Commission for not taking action against governments it believes are giving illegal state aid to airlines, such as Lufthansa and Air France. Nov 29, 2007

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Publication:AirGuide Business
Date:Dec 3, 2007
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