Flagging O’Brien’s new €70m corporate jet

Plane’s livery has an Irish Tricolour on its tail above the letters of its Manx registration

Denis O’Brien’s  G650 Gulfstream registered M-YGIG

Denis O’Brien’s G650 Gulfstream registered M-YGIG

 

The news this week that businessman Denis O’Brien has taken delivery of a new $70 million corporate jet has sparked much interest from readers. It is the businessman’s seventh Gulfstream jet, and comes just 2½ years after he last purchased an identical G650.

This newspaper revealed on Tuesday that the new G650 jet, which can accommodate up to 16 passengers and flies at up to 600mph, was registered in the Isle of Man last weekend, before flying to Dublin ahead of a trip to Luton.

There was particular interest in the plane’s livery, which includes an Irish Tricolour on its tail above the lettering of its Manx registration. How, one reader wondered, can a plane that is registered in the Isle of Man and owned by a company on the British-controlled island bear an Irish flag?

According to an informed industry source, the only requirement under aviation law is that the plane bears its registration lettering, which intrinsically includes a reference to where it is registered.

Irish registered planes, for example, bear lettering beginning “EI”. The lettering on Mr O’Brien’s new Manx-registered plane is M-YGIG.

The source says that there is no legal requirement whatsoever to have any national flag painted onto the plane. The convention within the aviation industry, however, is often to include the national flag of the plane’s operator.

Mr O’Brien, as an Irishman, has obviously chosen to apply an Irish Tricolour. But its inclusion is just an optional part of the plane’s livery, and is not part of its formal registration procedure.

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