Reports of payment problems have been following Italian airline Alitalia for years. These problems should have ended with the privatization of the company and the entry of Air France-KLM nearly five years ago - and yet the airline now faces financial problems yet again.
Energy group ENI announced that from Saturday on they will discontinue delivering kerosene to the airline. The reason: due to the airline's financial problems, Alitalia is unable to pay its fuel bills.
According to information from the Reuters news agency, the ailing airline would needs a capital injection of 300 million euros. In addition, a credit line of 200 million euros is needed, claims the employee representatives of the company. Without a capital injection, Alitalia will cease to operate within the next few days.
The saviors Air France & KLM?
Government and shareholders hope and rely on a rescue by Air France-KLM. The Franco-Dutch company already holds 25 percent of Alitalia's stake and could increase their share - or take over the Italians completely. However, there are a few critical points in the conditions. CEO of Air France-KLM Alexandre de Juniac indicated having an interest in the airline, but at the same time spoke of "stringent conditions".
But the former airline's employees fear these new conditions. There's a significant chance that thousands of jobs will be lost. Moreover, Rome's Fiumicino Airport could be degraded by the Air France-KLM Group to number three after Paris and Amsterdam. The Italians also fear losing important routes to the partner airlines.
Alitalia has suffered a loss of more than one billion euros loss, and has added to that another billion euros in debt.
Written by: Team Flight-Delayed.co.uk