The Dublin Airport Authority has confirmed that it is seeking up to 150 voluntary redundancies at Dublin Airport as part of a restructuring programme aimed at reducing its cost base at Irish airports.

Initially the schemes will only apply to areas being restructured, which include Retail and Passenger Services at Dublin Airport's Terminal One, and the Asset Management and Development division.

However, applications from staff in other areas may be considered if funds are available.

The closing date for applications is 22 June.

In a letter signed by Director of Human Resources Damian Lenagh, the DAA says airports continue to face major commercial challenges as the financial crisis and unemployment continue to have a negative impact on consumer spending.

As a result, the public are travelling less, and spending less in retail outlets and car parks.

Mr Lenagh notes that a previous restructuring known as the Cost Recovery Programme had helped to stabilise the DAA's financial position, but says the external environment has worsened radically since the CRP was agreed.

As a result, they are restructuring a number of business units, which will involve staff reductions.

They are introducing a limited voluntary severance and early retirement scheme aimed at securing up to 150 departures.

Mr Lenagh also warns that any future severance or early retirement schemes are likely to be less financially beneficial than the scheme announced today.

He concludes by saying that the company remains committed to maintaining good quality sustainable employment levels consistent with market demand, but has to continue to take steps to address issues within its cost base.

The move comes just a day after the Government announced plans to separate Shannon Airport from the DAA structure and merge it with Shannon Development, but leaving Shannon's debt of €100m with the remaining entity comprising Dublin and Cork airports.