Varadkar looking at options in event of Dublin Bus going bust

Last -ditch intervention planned to deal with row over cost-saving measures at company

Drivers at Dublin Bus have rejected several sets of proposals, including recommendations drawn up by the Labour Court, over recent months aimed at generating savings of more than €11 million which the firm maintained were essential. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Drivers at Dublin Bus have rejected several sets of proposals, including recommendations drawn up by the Labour Court, over recent months aimed at generating savings of more than €11 million which the firm maintained were essential. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Wed, Sep 11, 2013, 01:00


Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar has said his department is looking at its options in the event of Dublin Bus going bust.

Mr Varadkar said he hoped it would not come to that but he maintained he needed to prepare for every possibility. If the company were to cease operating, “we could put public transport back together again”.

He said there would be one last-ditch intervention over the next couple of weeks to try and solve the industrial relations problems at the company over proposed cost-saving measures.

Drivers at Dublin Bus have rejected several sets of proposals, including recommendations drawn up by the Labour Court, over recent months aimed at generating savings of more than €11 million which the firm maintained were essential.

The Minister told the Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk yesterday that cost savings had not been delivered and that he simply did not have the option of putting any more money in. “If a strike were to resume, and I very much hope that it doesn’t, the company will be in breach of their contract [with the Government] again and realistically there would come a point where the company would not be able to operate any more as it would simply run out of money – there would be no fares coming in, no Government subvention coming in,” he said.

“This time last year CIÉ was on the verge of going bust. I took a decision with my colleagues to borrow and beg money from everywhere to inject another €36 million into the company,” he said. “ The difficulty is I don’t have that option this year.”