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Ryanair cuts routes from Dublin home base, says more incentives needed

FILE PHOTO: Ryanair says cabin crew strikes hitting less than 2% of flights

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ryanair said on Thursday it will cut 17 routes from its winter schedule at its home base in Dublin and allocate 19 new Boeing 737 MAX planes to other European airports that offer incentives to fly quieter, lower CO2 emission aircraft.

Ryanair plans to move some of the new MAX aircraft, which Boeing says use 15-20% less fuel and emit 40% less noise, to airports in Spain and Italy, as well as Britain's Luton Airport, Ryanair executive Eddie Wilson told a news conference.

The Irish airline, Europe's largest by passenger numbers, cited Dublin Airport Authority's increased passenger charges and a failure to deliver a "meaningful" environmental incentive scheme as motivation for the decision.

The Dublin Airport Authority said in a statement that Ryanair was exaggerating the size of increased charges and that the authority was consulting with airlines about a proposed scheme to incentivise lower-emission aircraft in 2024.

It said Dublin Airport's passenger numbers had recovered to pre-pandemic levels and that it had no need to incentivise new growth given a capacity limit under the airport's planning permission.

Ryanair frequently cuts capacity from airports during disputes over charges and typically allocates aircraft to airports and regions offering the best growth incentives.

(Reporting by Padraic Halpin and Conor Humphries; Editing by Kylie MacLellan)