HomeAir LineRyanair: “We would like to open 40 or 50 routes in Madrid”

Ryanair: “We would like to open 40 or 50 routes in Madrid”

The CEO of Ryanair, Michael O’Leary, believes that the European Commission should force IAG to release 30% of the slots (flight rights) that Iberia and Air Europa have at Barajas airport. “It would be a way to promote consolidation, but also competition. It is a fairly simple formula,” he says in statements to Expansión (Ryanair is pushing to get slots from Iberia and Air Europa).

The top executive of the Irish airline group is interested in making a significant leap in the Madrid hub, where Ryanair currently flies to more than fifty destinations. “We are interested in operating more capacity. We believe that Barajas has room to grow,” he remarks.

In this sense, he points out that, taking advantage of the slots released by Air Europa and Iberia, undisputed leaders in Madrid, “we would like to open another forty or fifty routes in the city, some of them national.” However, in the distribution process you will have to face airlines such as Volotea, Binter or Easyjet, which have already publicly expressed their interest in remaining with short and medium-haul flights.

In relation to the expansion of the Barajas airport, O’Leary is in favor, although he questions the amount allocated. He considers that the 2.4 billion euros budgeted by Aena is an excessive amount. “Madrid needs an expansion of its terminals and this should cost between 400 million and 600 million, not 2.4 billion,” he says (Pedro Sánchez announces an investment of 2.4 billion to expand Barajas).

“We do not need more marble cathedrals for local politicians, but rather a modest, efficient and affordable expansion. But Aena is a regulated monopoly and it likes big numbers, with which airline rates can be increased,” he says.

Source: Preferente

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