Competition and trade law: Alitalia and Italian Government offer further assurances to the Commission

United Kingdom

The Italian Government and Alitalia have given new assurances to the Commission to allay allegations of discrimination by the Government in favour of Alitalia.

Last year the Commission authorised the Italian Government's restructuring plan involving the recapitalisation of Alitalia. The authorisation imposed a number of conditions. Alitalia promised that it would not use state subsidies to allow uneconomically low pricing strategies, that it would accept capacity limitations and that it would allow the Commission access to detailed accounts. The Italian Government, for its part, undertook to avoid discrimination in favour of Alitalia with regard to the award of traffic rights outside the EEA.

In response to Commission preparations to re-open the state aid procedure following complaints from other airlines, the Italian Government has assured the Commission that violations of the conditions will end and has undertaken to grant pending traffic rights applications and apply non-discriminatory selection criteria. Alitalia has undertaken to discontinue its promotional prices in the EEA and revert to its base tariff structure.