Ryanair has “shown interest” in buying its rival low-cost airline Norwegian Air, according to Norwegian chief executive Bjørn Kjos.

Kjos mentioned Ryanair’s interest during an interview with Reuters, saying Ryanair brought the matter up with the company’s board

A Norwegian spokesman told FORA: “You can take our CEO’s comments as a matter of fact. We have nothing further to add.”

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However, Ryanair is denying courting the Scandinavian airline.

A spokesman for the Irish airline said “there is no truth to these claims”.

“We have not made an approach to Norwegian and we have no interest. Our CEO has repeatedly said we believe (Norwegian Air Shuttle) will go bust as oil rises to $80 a barrel and we don’t catch falling knives,” he said through a statement.

Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary.

Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has frequently suggested that Norwegian Air is destined to “go bust” as fuel prices climb. The Nordic carrier has rejected this claim.

Ryanair said in a statement: “There is no truth to these claims. We have not made an approach to Norwegian and we have no interest.”

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Michael O'Leary said that that Norwegian was "desperately trying to manufacture a mythical interest" in the group.

The Irish Independent reports that Aer Lingus parent company IAG took a 5 percent stake in Norwegian, with a hint at a potential takeover. However, IAG’s approaches for a bigger deal has so far been rebuffed. It is believed that IAG boss Willie Walsh will come back with a third bid.

Low-cost airline Norwegian Air.Wikicommons