'Expand green list or we'll move abroad' - Ryanair issues ultimatum to government threatening Irish jobs
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'Expand green list or we'll move abroad' - Ryanair issues ultimatum to government threatening Irish jobs

RYANAIR has demanded that the Irish government increases the number of countries included on its green list or it will leave the country.

The budget airline have issued an ultimatum to the powers that be, warning that unless all 27 EU nations are added to the list, the company will look to move its assets to countries where restrictions aren't as tight.

In a statement, Ryanair said the green list had done more harm than good to Ireland's tourism industry and will continue to have a "severe, detrimental effect" on the sector, leading to further job losses.

"Ryanair recently cancelled 1,000 flights between Ireland and the UK and allocated that traffic elsewhere, more of that is to come, not just in Ryanair but inevitably every other airline that currently operates in and out of Ireland," they said in a statement.

"The Government should offer incentives in the form of cuts to airport charges in all airports across Ireland for the next three years.

"If Ireland doesn’t act now with incentives to attract traffic this winter and for next year and beyond, then airlines will plan accordingly and migrate that traffic to the other 27 EU countries and the UK where there will be incentives to increase traffic, but more importantly - no travel restrictions."

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Ireland's official green list - a list of destinations deemed safe to travel to, where quarantining upon return won't be necessary - includes just 15 countries, and few of them are considered to be your 'typical' summer holiday destinations.

The likes of the UK, Spain, France, Portugal and the US were all left off the list, much to the frustration of would-be holidaymakers, and airline companies.

Ryanair have been extremely critical of the Irish government's restrictions on travel in spite of the threat of coronavirus ever since lockdown restrictions were first imposed back in March.

The airline has reported a loss of €185 million for the three months to June 30 as passenger numbers fell by 99% due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

This compares with a profit after tax of €243 million for the same period last year.