| 14°C Dublin

Airlines 'must prove their worth' if travel tax ditched

TOURISM Minister Mary Hanafin said yesterday that airline chiefs will have to show they can make a "very valuable" contribution to the economy if the air travel tax is scrapped.

Ms Hanafin said the tax has the ability to raise €125m each year and that, if it were removed, the Government would have to find that money elsewhere.

She said that Ryanair chief Michael O'Leary and Aer Lingus chief Christoph Mueller would have to show how they could make up for this deficit -- possibly by making a commitment to provide additional routes.

Irish Independent