RYANAIR’S LOSES FIVE YEAR GIRONA EXTENSION
18 ROUTES CUT AND OVER 1,000 JOBS LOST AT GIRONA
The new Spanish government has gone back on its predecessors agreement with Ryanair, confirmed in December 2010, in which Mr O’Leary’s low cost airline was to use Gerona as a base for 11 aircraft, with 64 routes, guaranteeing up to 4,000 jobs in and around Gerona Airport.
From the end of February 2011, Ryanair will now close 18 out of 64 routes and reduce the number of flights on 17 other routes. Altogether, more than 100 weekly flights will be lost to lower cost airports at other European destinations, along with up to 1,700 jobs in the area.
Speaking in Barcelona, Ryanair’s Michael Cawley said:
“Ryanair sincerely regrets that the new Government of Catalonia has failed to honour the recent five year extension of our base agreement at Girona Airport despite the fact that it was consulted on its detail by the outgoing Government, Sadly this will lead to significant traffic and job losses at Girona instead of 4m passengers and the 4,000 local jobs which would have been sustained had the Catalonia Government implemented the agreement which was concluded in December 2010,
Ryanair will now switch five aircraft from Girona with the loss of 18 routes, over 100 weekly flights, 1.7m passengers p.a. and 1,700 jobs to other airports elsewhere in Europe, It is a remarkable achievement by the new government to have caused such job and tourism losses within weeks of taking office. However, while this is a significant loss for Girona, Ryanair will continue to grow at other lower cost airports in Spain and elsewhere in Europe.”
Routes cut down