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Italian group gets 'all-clear' on Alitalia

Nov. 6, 2008 at 3:18 PM

GENEVA, Switzerland, Nov. 6 (UPI) -- International transportation authorities have permission for an Italian business group to resurrect much of the collapsed airline Alitalia.

The International Air Transport Association in Geneva, Switzerland, gave the all-clear for the Compagnia Aerea Italiana group's plans to buy Alitalia's fight operations, ANSA, the Italian news agency, reported Thursday.

''We had a constructive meeting and I believe we set the stage for a happy ending to this project,'' IATA Chairman Giovanni Bisignani said.

The business group, known as CAI, said it would offer $1.26 billion for Alitalia assets, including the assumption of a $796 million debt.

CAI said it was also planning to purchase Alitalia's service unit, its airport operations, the budget airline Volare and its regional carrier Alitalia Express, ANSA said.