28 MAY 2018
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The incoming Italian populist government has confirmed it intends to halt the sale of Italy’s insolvent national carrier Alitalia, part of the Sky Team alliance, as part of its own economic plan for the Mediterranean's largest economy.
The move is contained in a draft proposal seen by Reuters news agency. The document says the new coalition believes Alitalia needs to be relaunched because the country needs to maintain a "competitive national carrier".
Reuters reported that Claudio Borghi, economics spokesman for the far-right Lega Nord party, had since confirmed the government would stop the sale of the bankrupt airline, although he stopped short of saying explicitly that the government was planning to renationalise it again.
Alitalia is in the middle of bankruptcy administration and as part of that process is said to have secured bids from, among others, Lufthansa, Wizz Air and a consortium that includes easyJet and US investment firm Cerberus Capital.
The election had already caused a March deadline for the submission of bids to be deferred to October to allow the bidders time to adapt and sound out whichever group eventually won power.
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
David Granville, United Kingdom
Great to also hear they're investing in a new uniform (again) - smacks of fiddling while Rome burns
John O\'Shea, Budapest
The Italian economy is in a sad state,the new populist government has promised give-away economics to get in to power ...they cannot afford Alitalia. Halt the sale as ' we ' need a Competitive National Carrier. Putting furrther funds in to this insolvent carrier is not the answer. A complete close down and start anew with a much lower cost base. But will the Unions and various interested partoies allow this ! Best wishes to Italy