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Aer Lingus concerns

A HIGH Court judge has expressed concern about aspects of an application by Aer Lingus Group plc for approval for a €500m share capital reduction in a situation where there is a €700m shortfall in the Aer Lingus pension fund.

After Mr Justice Peter Kelly raised the pension deficit in court, he was told the matter may be the subject of litigation.

Paul Sreenan, for Aer Lingus, said the company took the view it had met all its obligations concerning payments but anticipated there could be litigation or "industrial relations problems".

It is seeking approval for reduction of its non-distributable reserves from €859.4m to €359.4m so as to allow for €500m to be credited as a profit available for distribution in company reserves.