April 26, 2019 / 5:51 AM / 24 days ago

REFILE-EU's competition chief welcomes Italy plan on savers, still probing Alitalia loan - paper

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MILAN, April 26 (Reuters) - Europe’s competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager welcomed Italy’s latest two-track plan to compensate savers hit by the country’s recent banking crisis, according to comments in an interview with Il Sole 24 Ore and other European papers.

Asked about Italy’s plan to indefinitely postpone a deadline for the repayment of a 900 million euro ($1 billion) bridge loan given to struggling carrier Alitalia, Vestager said that the move would be neutral for the European Commission’s ongoing inquiry into whether the lifeline provided by the Rome government was illegal state aid.

“If the loan is found to be state aid, then it would have been granted for longer,” Vestager told the paper, adding the EU antitrust regulators have yet to conclude their analysis on the matter. ($1 = 0.8981 euros) (Reporting by Agnieszka Flak, editing by Giselda Vagnoni)

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