Chief executive of Ryanair Michael O'Leary said this morning that he has lost up to €350m because of the fall in the Ryanair share price. He said he is losing no sleep over it, however.

Mr O'Leary predicted that the share price will come back up again when world markets improve.

He said that the drop was due to high oil prices over the past year and the current economic downturn.

Mr O'Leary said that Ryanair may make no profit this year.

Speaking in Belfast this morning, Mr O'Leary described the move by Aer Lingus from Shannon to Belfast as a financial disaster. He said Aer Lingus had halted its successful Shannon to Heathrow service where the company had load factors of 80% and established a Belfast to London route that is struggling to record 50% load figures.

He said he would not rule out a merger between Ryanair and Aer Lingus in the future.