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Subsequent week essential for Italy, EU talks over Alitalia 

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Alitalia airplane is seen on the tarmac after touchdown at Ben Gurion Worldwide airport in Lod, close to Tel Aviv, Israel

MILAN (Reuters) – Talks between Italy and the European Fee over the revamp of Alitalia will enter a key section subsequent week, Italian Business Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti mentioned on Sunday.

Brussels and Rome have been in negotiations for months over Italy’s plan to restructure the airline via the launch of a brand new, state-owned firm referred to as ITA.

The brand new provider wants the EU’s approval for the federal government injection of three billion euros earlier than it might begin working, however dangers lacking the summer season season as talks are dragging on.

“I feel subsequent week can be essential,” Giorgetti mentioned, including the dialogue with EU’s competitors unit had been tough.

“There’s a tug-of-war with Brussels … within the title of competitors, the EU needs (ITA) to liberate as many (airport) slots as potential, however this isn’t within the curiosity of the brand new firm,” he mentioned throughout a political debate on the web.

The EU is requesting ITA offers up as a lot as half of its airport slots at Milan metropolis airport, drops the model Alitalia and begins with out the dealing with and the upkeep divisions of the previous provider have triggered criticism in Italy, with commerce unions claiming the EU was a lot more durable with Alitalia than with Air France-KLM and Lufthansa.

“Italy has not bent to the EU … because of this talks have dragged on,” Giorgetti mentioned, acknowledging, nevertheless, that Alitalia was loss-making in 2019 whereas Air France-KLM and Lufthansa have been worthwhile after they have been hit by the coronavirus disaster.

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