Commission offers €2.5m for former Lufthansa staff
The European Commission plans to give Ireland €2.5m to help find new jobs for 250 former workers in the Lufthansa Technik Airmotive plant that closed early last year.
The offer will now go to the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers for approval.
The money would come from the European Globalisation Fund (EGF), which was set up to support EU workers who lost their jobs due to globalisation and the economic crisis.
The Government, which applied for the support, would provide a further €1.6m to the scheme, which will help the 250 workers deemed to be most in difficulty. The closure of the plant, in Rathcoole, Co Dublin, resulted in 424 job losses in total across Lufthansa and two of its suppliers.
New EU rules mean the money will also be used to help 200 young jobless Irish people into work or training under the EU's Youth Employment Initiative.
"The European Globalisation Fund is a concrete expression of European solidarity...I'm confident that this sign of EU solidarity will prove valuable in helping these 250 workers to manage the difficult transition into news jobs," Employment Commissioner Marianne Thyssen said.
The Rathcoole plant was originally set up by Aer Lingus in 1980, with Lufthansa taking a 60pc shareholding in 1997 and full ownership in 1999. Its closure was announced in November 2013 due to declining revenues and fewer international market opportunities.
The EGF - which will continue to operate until the end of 2020 at least - has received 132 applications since it was set up in 2007. Around €542m has been requested to help more than 118,000 workers.