May 23, 2018 / 10:16 AM / a year ago

Alitalia nationalisation would be tricky, sale process must go on: minister

FILE PHOTO: An Alitalia worker talks with a passenger during a strike by Italy's national airline Alitalia workers at Fiumicino international airport in Rome, Italy July 24, 2015. REUTERS/Max Rossi

ROME (Reuters) - Italy should not push to nationalise insolvent airline Alitalia and the government should not drop the sale process that already attracted interest from other carriers, Industry Minister Carlo Calenda said on Wednesday.

The anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the far-right League, which are working to set up a new government, have a plan to halt the sale of Alitalia. Last month, Germany’s Lufthansa (LHAG.DE), budget carriers EasyJet (EZJ.L) and Wizz Air (WIZZ.L) submitted expressions of interest in at least parts of the airline.

“I hear talk of nationalisation; think carefully about this option, I doubt it would be feasible,” Calenda said during a conference in Rome.

“There are some serious offers, let’s not lose them again,” he added.

Reporting by Stefano Bernabei, writing by Stefano Rebaudo; eiditing by Agnieszka Flak

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