TAP: European Commission has chosen to allocate 18 slots at Lisbon Airport to EasyJet-Empresas

After being asked to approve the restructuring program this Thursday, the European Commission will allocate 18 slots per day for TAP at Lisbon Airport to easyJet, the airline that has overtaken competitor Ryanair in a bid to take first place. I did.

“The European Commission ranked EasyJet first among the airlines that applied for licenses for up to 18 slots per day. [para descolagem e aterragem — “slots”] At Lisbon Airport, “announces community executives in a statement.

The agency said, “Slots will be available by TAP Portuguese Airlines to alleviate the excessive distortion of competition caused by the restructuring aid given by Portugal after it was approved by the Commission in December 2021. “We will allow EasyJet to start exploring,” a new route from October 30, 2022. ” Other airlines competing for TAP slots are also “low-cost” Ryanair, telling Lusa on Monday that they are the “most reliable” candidates compared to easyJet.

Brussels takes a different view, with a press release detailing proposals received according to eligibility, rating and classification criteria, taking into account the seating capacity that airlines can offer using available slots. I analyzed it. ” “By TAP Portugal”, therefore choose to give easyJet first place.

“EasyJet is currently prioritizing slot transfer agreements with TAP Portugal and as of October 30, 2022, it will be able to expand its operations at Lisbon Airport and offer new flights.” The European Commission says.

The problem is that on December 21, last year, the European Commission approved TAP’s restructuring program, announcing € 2.55 billion in aid to enable the group to return to viability. It’s about not harming the competition in Europe.

To be precise, some of the remedies imposed by Brussels to approve the restructuring program require airlines to provide up to 18 “slots” per day at Lisbon Airport.

Cited in a memo released this Thursday, Marguerite Vestager, Vice-Chairman of the European Commission with a competitive portfolio, adds: Currently, TAP is being held at Lisbon Airport. “

“This situation allows EasyJet to expand its activities at this crowded airport, thus contributing to fair prices and giving European consumers a wide range of choices, thus competing in the European aviation sector. We will promote it, “says Marguerite Vestager.

At the same time, the award helps ensure that Portugal’s financial support for TAP, which enables airlines to return to viability, does not have an undue negative impact on the Single Market. “The head of European supervision concludes.

Competition to access the 18 daily “slots” that TAP must abandon at Lisbon Airport begins at the end of February after being imposed by the European Commission to approve the restructuring program, sponsored by an external consultant. I did. June.

According to the details of the bid discussed by Lusa, after the evaluation of the proposal was decided, an agreement on the transfer of slots was signed around July 25, and the operation will start on October 30. ..

EasyJet is a European low-cost carrier with 308 aircraft, operating 927 routes at 153 airports in 34 countries. The company serves several European cities on daily and weekly flights from three major airports in mainland Portugal (Faro, Lisbon and Porto) and Madeira Airport (Funchal).

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