Ryanair has again broken the historical record in the number of passengers and threatened Belgium

Ryanair has again broken the historical record in the number of passengers and threatened Belgium

The airline carried 16.9 million passengers in August, its fourth consecutive monthly record and a record for Europe, the Irish low-cost airline said on Friday. At the same time, his boss Michael O’Leary said he was worried about the consequences of a possible slowdown in Europe. He once again threatened to restrict his activities in Belgium, claiming to “seriously review them”. This is especially aimed at those in Savantum.

Ryanair carried 17 million people last month, a 52% increase compared to August 2021. This performance creates a new historical record for the Irish company, the fourth in a row. Reached millions in August 2019.

“We should reach a billion euros in profit this year,” enthused Michael O’Leary, CEO of the group, which plans to increase capacity for the winter.

However, these excellent results did not stop him from fearing the impact of a possible economic downturn in Europe on winter air traffic. High inflation could also cause problems, he said, as he worried people would fly less often to save money.

“Withdraw flights at Charleroi”

The CEO also threatened Belgium with no growth for the next 12 months. In interviews with L’Echo, La Libre Belgique and Le Vif from Dublin, he said he was reviewing operations there.

“Saventum airport is one of these bases that we are looking at very closely. I can’t guarantee we won’t close it this winter. We are also thinking of withdrawing flights from Charleroi,” he warns in the columns of La Libre Belgique, adding that several European bases should be announced to close within two weeks.

During the winter aeronautical season, the low-cost company has two aircraft based in Saventum and around fifteen aircraft in Charleroi.

The CEO was highly critical of the new aviation tax in Belgium introduced last April, which ranges from 2 to 10 euros, and is called “M…”. He condemned the Belgian tax break for transfer passengers.

Michael O’Leary also attacked Brussels Airport for recently raising prices. “Saventum is certainly one of the airports where our presence is seriously questioned,” he told Le Vif.

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