Ryanair pays up to end stand­off

Western Mail - - UK&WORLD NEWS -

RYANAIR has paid 525,000 eu­ros (£457,000) in sub­si­dies back to French au­thor­i­ties to end a Tar­mac stand­off that forced 149 pas­sen­gers to dis­em­bark from an im­pounded plane.

The French civil avi­a­tion au­thor­ity said it had seized the plane at Bordeaux-Merignac air­port as a “last re­sort” af­ter France re­peat­edly tried to get Ryanair to pay back re­gional funds to the air­line in 2008/09.

The Euro­pean Com­mis­sion later ruled those funds il­le­gal, say­ing they gave Ryanair an un­fair eco­nomic ad­van­tage.

The avi­a­tion au­thor­ity called it “re­gret­table that the state was forced” to evac­u­ate the plane on Thurs­day. Pas­sen­gers were put on an­other flight five hours later. Ryanair did not com­ment. Avi­a­tion au­thor­ity spokesman Eric Her­aud said the air­line had paid back the funds and the plane would be re­leased.

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