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ITA-Lufthansa: Rome-Berlin agreement is essential

Brussels response should arrive by 15 January 2024

The Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) officially sent to Brussels on November 30th the documents of the negotiation with the German aviation group Lufthansa for the privatization of the national carrier ITA Airways. Now that the terms of the agreement, reached between Rome and Berlin, have been formally notified. A decisive phase for the future of the airline begins.

The Directorate General of the European Competition Commission will now have 25 working days to respond to the notification. The expiration date is set for January 15, 2024. However, the green light on the ITA-Lufthansa agreement from Brussels is subject to verification that it does not create a monopoly that affects the European aviation market.

Under the observation of European technicians there are concessions on airport slots and on some routes, but also some assets very dear to the Germans, such as the sale of a minority stake in Lufthansa Technik, the company specialized in the MRO sector (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul). All issues which, according to industry experts, made it necessary to postpone the official notification to Brussels, to be properly regulated before being endorsed by the Competition Commission.

The objective of ITA and Lufthansa is to avoid at all costs that the checks are prolonged over time. The question is clear: without the German Group at the helm of the Italian national airline, at the moment ITA, with its current economic forces and internal resources, is not able to support itself. In short, there is no plan B for Rome and therefore in recent months the Government has worked hard to ensure that everything goes smoothly, without any hitches. 

On the topic, see also the article published by AVIONEWS.

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AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency