There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon for Italy’s stricken national airline, Alitalia. One of the nine unions involved in negotiations to save the company has accepted a deal offered by the consortium CAI, which wants to buy the profitable parts of the airline. The government and other unions are due to discuss the rescue package in Rome later.
Alitalia says it is running out of money to buy fuel and may have to start cancelling flights from today.
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has pledged to do all he can to save the company. The government owns 49.9 percent of Alitalia, but strict EU competition rules prevent Rome from bailing the company out.
The airline’s workers are against plans for thousands of job losses and pay cuts which form part of the rescue package. Alitalia is being run by administrators after asking for bankrupcy protection at the end of August. If no deal is agreed, it could go into liquidation as early as this week.