Air France files complaint against Ryanair with the European Commission
Air France confirmed (11-Mar-2010) it filed a complaint with the European Commission against Ryanair at the end of Nov-2009, with respect to the "financial aid it receives from French regional and local airports". Ryanair responded, stating it has not recieved any such state aid, while Air France had (AP, 11-Mar-2010). [more]
Air France: "Ryanair's agreement to serve these airports is conditional on the airport authorities' granting aid to it. Such measures, taking the form of reduced airport taxes, preferential ground handling rates at certain airports or marketing aid, have been implemented by at least 25 French regional airports. In addition to the fact that they were never officially announced before they were implemented, these measures are contrary to European regulations. They are neither temporary or decrease over time. On the contrary, they are considered to be permanent. Moreover, the subsidies granted Ryanair are often financed by the airport taxes paid by other airlines at these airports," Company Statement, 11-Mar-2010.
Ryanair: "We pay no attention to false claims from high-fares, fuel-surcharging airlines like Air France. They can't compete with Ryanair so they complain instead. Ryanair is investing millions in regional French airport whereas Air France ignores them," Stephen McNamara, spokesman. Source: AP, 11-Mar-2010.