April 16, 2021

IAG limits non-EU capital to 47.5% in order to save its flight rights | Economy

IAG limits non-EU capital to 47.5% in order to save its flight rights | Economy

The board of directors of IAG, the group to which Iberia belongs, has decided to establish at 47.5% the maximum allowed capital in the hands of shareholders who do not come from the European Union, in order to safeguard their flight rights, above all, of its Spanish subsidiaries, Iberia and Vueling, the airline reported in a relevant event to the CNMV.

However, although the measure can be interpreted as a first step of the IAG to adapt to the conditions of the Brexit that force the airlines to have a majority of the community capital, it is not in any way an effective shield against the departure of the Kingdom. EU Union, as it expressly leaves British citizens out of consideration as an EU shareholder.

"British persons are not and will not be treated as non-EU persons and, consequently, are not and will not be subject to the restrictions on the acquisition of shares mentioned in this announcement, unless IAG notifies the shareholders otherwise. IAG has no plans to issue such notification, "says the British group.

Distribution of capital

The European Commission has not accepted the arguments raised by Spain and Iberia up to now. The agency refers to the community regulation that requires that more than 50% of the company's property, as well as its effective control, fall on the Member States or their nationals. "

After its merger with British Airiways, Iberia became the property of a company called Ib Opco, whose ownership corresponds 100% to the British group IAG. The airline, therefore, would not meet the property criteria required by Brussels. Iberia has alleged, however, that the political rights of Ib Opco were shared between 49.9% of IAG and 50.01% of a Spanish company called Garanair, 100% ownership of El Corte Inglés


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