Government and IAG meet on Aer Lingus

Further talks scheduled over €1.36bn bid for airline

IAG has been circling Aer Lingus for more than three months and in January said that it is willing to pay €2.55 a-share for the Irish airline, once both the State and Ryanair agree to sell their holdings in the company.

IAG has been circling Aer Lingus for more than three months and in January said that it is willing to pay €2.55 a-share for the Irish airline, once both the State and Ryanair agree to sell their holdings in the company.

 

Government officials met with International Consolidated Airlines’ Group (IAG) representatives on Friday to discuss the company’s €1.36 billion bid for Aer Lingus.

IAG has been circling Aer Lingus for more than three months and in January said that it is willing to pay €2.55 a-share for the Irish airline, once both the State and Ryanair agree to sell their holdings in the company.

The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe, confirmed that a Government steering group that is reviewing the proposal met with IAG on Friday morning.

“This meeting was designed to give further consideration to the IAG proposal, the details of which were discussed,” the minister said.

He added that the two sides are expected to come together again shortly.

The meeting was the latest of a series of negotiations that began within days of IAG announcing details of its proposed offer at the end January.

The Government wants guarantees preserving links between the Republic’s three main airports and London’s Heathrow hub before it will agree to sell the State’s 25.1 per cent stake in Aer Lingus.

IAG chief executive, Willie Walsh, has already offered to guarantee that Aer Lingus’s landing rights at Heathrow will only be used to serve flights from the Republic’s airports for five years if a deal goes through.

However, the Government says that five years is not enough.

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