herald

Thursday 17 August 2017

IAG sale good for jobs, says Aer Lingus boss

Stephen Kavanagh
Stephen Kavanagh

THE boss of Aer Lingus has stepped up his bid to persuade unions to back the proposed takeover by IAG, saying it would result in job creation and significant growth opportunities.

Stephen Kavanagh said any job losses as a result of the takeover would be "significantly outnumbered" by new positions created.

And he pledged to support the introduction of binding agreements on pay and conditions.

The latest intervention by the airline boss will be seen as an attempt to persuade unions of the merits of the State selling its 25.1pc stake.

In a letter to the country's biggest union, Siptu, he said the workers and the company would benefit from a sale.

"What the IAG proposal brings is significant opportunity for growth that is in both our interests," Mr Kavanagh wrote.

"It offers a significant growth opportunity and we are prepared to develop our agreements . . . to enable the opportunity to be optimised to the benefit of Aer Lingus and its people, whom you represent."

Siptu's Owen Reidy said the assurances "are too vague and do not go far enough".

The latest intervention by Aer Lingus management comes as Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe said a decision on whether to strike a deal with IAG will be made "within weeks".

focus

He confirmed that government representatives will meet IAG management today as talks over the bid continue.

"We will be continuing to focus on the matters that we know to be of great importance," Mr Donohoe said.

"That will be access, that will be impact on jobs and understanding what effect any potential acquisition will have on the development of Aer Lingus and connectivity."

noconnor@herald.ie

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