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European judges have postponed a ruling on a Ryanair challenge to Germany’s €320 million bailout of rival airline Condor during the Covid-19 crisis, the Irish Times reported. Ryanair asked the European courts to overturn a European Commission decision to allow the German government to lend Condor €550 million in April 2020 for damage done by Covid flight cancellations. The General Court of the European Union was due to rule on Ryanair’s challenge to the commission’s decision on Wednesday, but postponed its judgment until further notice.
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May 4 Report: Snarled-Up Ports Point to Worsening Global Supply Chain Woes Global supply chain problems look to set to worsen, a new report published on Tuesday said, as China's COVID-19 lockdowns, Russia's invasion of Ukraine and other strains cause even longer delays at ports and drive up costs, Reuters reported. The study by analysts at Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) found that one-fifth of the global container ship fleet was currently stuck in congestion at various major ports.
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Ireland needs to sort out a group of zombie companies that have survived on Government support during the pandemic, leading law firm McCann Fitzgerald says. And other “viable but broken” businesses that have built up debt through forbearance need to act now to protect their operations, the Irish Times reported. David O’Dea, a restructuring and insolvency partner at the law firm McCann Fitzgerald, says insolvency business in Ireland will return to normal levels after two years when company failure numbers fall back to the easy-credit Celtic Tiger era.
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Restaurateur Jay Bourke has been declared bankrupt by the Irish High Court on the back of an application by the Revenue Commissioners over a tax debt of €558,000, the Irish Times reported. Bourke tried to secure a debt write-off plan, known as a personal insolvency arrangement, to reduce the bulk of his €13.7 million in debts but this was withdrawn earlier this month after one of his creditors, Pepper Finance, which is owed €12.2 million, objected.
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A new redundancy payment scheme for Irish workers laid off because of Covid-19 health restrictions has opened for applications, the Irish Times reported. The Redundancy Payments (Amendment) Act 2022 will allow workers who were made redundant due to public-health restrictions between March 13th, 2020, and January 31st, 2022, to apply for the payment, which will be up to €2,268 tax-free. Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said that the scheme means that workers made redundant “to protect public health during the pandemic will not be out of pocket for the period they were laid off”.
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The U.S. Internal Revenue Service has lifted its objection to Limerick-based aircraft lessor Nordic Aviation Capital’s bankruptcy plan, the Independent reported. Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC) has been seeking to get out from under $6.3bn (€5.8bn) of debt by handing it to lenders. The IRS said in a filing on April 15 that it was withdrawing its objection to the bankruptcy plan on the condition that the lenders pay any administrative claims without the IRS having to file a request for them. The IRS had raised a last-minute objection to the plan last week on technical grounds.
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Ireland’s central bank is weighing whether to reinstate a capital buffer for banks it removed during the pandemic, amid a worsening economic outlook driven by the war in Ukraine, Bloomberg News reported. The central bank expected to rebuild the counter-cyclical capital buffer (CCyB) “gradually” through 2022 given the Irish economic outlook, it said in November. However in its latest decision on the buffer published on March 24 but not publicized until now, it warned there is “considerable uncertainty” around the economic outlook. The buffer remains at 0%.
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Ulster Bank said on Wednesday that it has formally begun writing to groups of current and deposit account customers in Ireland to give them six months’ notice to move their business to another provider and close their accounts, the Irish Times reported. The bank said it is sending out letters and emails on a phased basis to different groups of customers “to help to facilitate orderly account switching and new account opening across the industry and to avoid a single closure date for customers and the industry”.
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Annual inflation in Ireland neared an almost 40-year high of 6.7% in March, a jump from 5.6% a month earlier on the back of soaring energy prices, data from the Central Statistics Office showed on Thursday, Reuters reported. Diesel and petrol rocketed by 46% and 35% respectively year-on-year while food prices rose by 3.1%. Prices overall were 1.9% higher than February, the fastest month-on-month rise since monthly figures were first collected in 1997.
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A High Court application seeking approval of a financial arrangement that would write off the bulk of restaurateur Jay Bourke’s €13.7 million debts has been withdrawn, the Irish Times reported. The withdrawal came following an objection from Pepper Finance, which is owed €12.2 million from a contingent liability arising from Mr Bourke’s loans on Co Meath hotel Bellinter House, which he co-owned. Pepper would be paid less than 1 per cent of its debt under his proposed insolvency arrangement. Mr.
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