Alitalia denied that it had agreed to acquire a majority stake in Air Alps and planned to relocate the Austrian Regional to the province of Bolzano, Il Sole 24 Ore reported. Alitalia noted that any agreement with Air Alps would be limited to commercial considerations, as it is not permitted to buy shares in other airlines until the end of 2005 under the conditions set by the European Commission in approving a government-guaranteed €400 million ($482 million) bridging loan.

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