Italy’s new flag carrier, Italia Trasporto Aereo (ITA), has reportedly replaced long-struggling airline Alitalia and is set to commence operations and ticket sales soon, as per the aviation authority of the country.
The ENAC civil aviation authority supposedly stated that it provided an air operator’s certificate to the new company, offering the authorization to sell tickets and fly beginning October 15. Pierluigi Di Palma, the President of ENAC, apparently said that the new Italian carrier is authorized for take off.
The forthcoming launch of the new airline caps numerous state rescues of legacy carrier and loss-making airline Alitalia and long-drawn negotiations with the European Commission (EC) over bailout funds.
Di Palma opined that the new airline will aid the reboot of the sector, contributing in a momentous way to control the difficulties surfacing from the outbreak crisis.
The scheduled debut of ITA comes along the heels of serious challenges for the airline sector that plummeted during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly larger carriers that were already grappling to compete against budget airlines.
Italy agreed on a deal with Brussels in July for the new airline, after guaranteeing that it would be entirely independent from Alitalia, which was put under state authority in 2017. Italy has consistently failed to find a buyer for its struggling airline.
As part of the restructuring, ITA will take over partial assets of Alitalia while renouncing others, like spinning off its maintenance service and ground operations, getting its airplane fleet down to 50, and conceding airport slots.
The license granted by ENAC to the air operator is the last administrative step in the process of commencing the operations of ITA. However, it is still unclear as to how will Alitalia reroute or reimburse close to 255,000 people who have bought tickets from the airline after October 15.