EU Gives Green Light to Etihad’s 49% Stake in Alitalia
The European Commission approved Etihad Airways’ plans to acquire 49% of Italian flag carrier Alitalia on Thursday. In order to gain approval, Emirates agreed to give up takeoff and landing slots on the route linking Rome and Belgrade.
The commission, the EU’s antitrust regulator, had expressed concerns about competition in the Rome-Belgrade route because Alitalia and Air Serbia, which is also owned in part by Etihad, would control the market.
Etihad and Alitalia said that the two plan to complete the transaction by the end of the year.
“Today’s decision by the EU approves the largest ever foreign investment in Alitalia,” said Gabriele del Torchio, the airline’s CEO. “[It] demonstrates huge confidence in the future of the national carrier.”
(Photo: Accura Media Group)