Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Italian Government For The Privatization And Sale Of Alitalia-ITA

By Joseph M. Calisi © 2022 All Rights Reserved

Rome, Italy, February 12, 2022

The center-left Mario Draghi-led government of Italy apparently is preparing for the sale and privatization/reorganization of the state-controlled Alitalia and its successor Italia Trasporto Aereo (ITA) Airways.  The Italian cabinet is expected to approve the deal in the following week. This move comes on the heels of the creation of ITA Airways, which received the bones of the former national carrier, Alitalia reorganization effort. ITA began operations on October 15, 2021, 5 months ago with a flight into JFK Airport in New York with an all-Airbus fleet.

An Alitalia Bombardier-built Embraer E170 arrives from Bari – Palese as passengers disembark at Rome Fiumicino-Leonardo da Vinci Airport hardstand area.
Photo by Joseph M. Calisi © 2022 All Rights Reserved

The Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) which is in partnership with Lufthansa German national airline has had its eyes on the Italian airline for multiple years as a prospective buyer. MSC Group is a world leader in the cargo and cruise business.

Lufthansa is looking to use Rome-Fiumicino and Milan Linate as international gateways to the Americas and links to European markets as well with a 40% stake in the Italian national carrier.

The arrival of the Alitalia Boeing 777-200 at JFK Airport.
Photo by Joseph M. Calisi © 2022 All Rights Reserved

The Alitalia airline has long been considered a black hole in the Italian economy. Draghi is the former European Central Bank chief and this sale is thought to be a feather in his cap.

Over the years, there have been multiple mergers proposed. For example, at one point in 2018, a merger with the Italian State Railways (FS) was being considered.

Alitalia planes get ground service and are lined up at arrival/departure gates in Rome Italy’s Leonardo da Vinci/Fiumicino Airport.
Photo by Joseph M. Calisi © 2022 All Rights Reserved

The financial details were not available at press time but Alitalia-ITA Airways has cost the Italian taxpayers and government almost 5.4 billion Euros since 2008. ITA is not expected to turn a profit until 2024.

Joseph Calisi
Joseph Calisihttps://josephmcalisiphotography.com/
International Transportation Photojournalist and Syndicator of News Stories and Images Since 1993 TV credits include Telly Award finalist (11-minute documentary on the last days of mainline steam trains in the world in China) and NY Emmy Award nominee for a news magazine story on the 75th anniversary of NY’s IND subway.

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