Air transport complements the other means of transportation of goods and passengers while contributing to job creation and economic activity. The Italian air transport market is the sixth largest one in Europe based on IATA's connectivity index as of 2018. In 2008, the former Alitalia (Linee Aeree Italiane) went bankrupt and a new Alitalia was founded to revive the aviation market in the country. The new Alitalia emerged as a result of buying the bankrupt Alitalia and merging it with Air One, another bankrupt Italian carrier. Thus, Alitalia was founded in 2008 as the new flag carrier airline of Italy.
During 2019, Alitalia’s passenger traffic amounted to roughly 22.7 million people. Despite new efforts, Alitalia experienced declining revenue development until 2017. In 2018, the company exhibited an improving financial position. Throughout that period, the revenue of Alitalia reached 3.65 billion U.S. dollars in 2019, up from 3.6 billion U.S. dollars in 2018. Similarly, the net loss of Alitalia decreased to 400 million euros loss in 2018 compared to 2017. Contrary to what was envisioned while re-founding Alitalia in 2008, the high competitiveness of the aviation industry creates hurdles for Alitalia to grow.
Similar to the overall activities of Alitalia, the Italian air transport market experienced an alike market trend. In the course of the recent decade, aggregate activities of the Italian air transport market fluctuated around ten billion euros in annual turnover. In 2017, the annual turnover of Italian air transport was equivalent to roughly 9.3 billion euros, which declined from 9.5 billion euros in 2008. In that same year, the annual turnover of passenger aviation in Italy was down to 8.9 billion euros, down from its peak level of 12.5 billion in 2014. Thus, between 2010 and 2017, the Italian air passenger transport industry revealed even a sharper weakening trend. In addition to the turnover values of Italian air transportation, the number of local enterprises in the air transport industry demonstrated a severe declining trend between 2008 and 2017.
When it comes to the regional position of Alitalia, Alitalia is only the 14th leading European airline based on revenue in 2018. The Italian flag carrier did only slightly better than Finnair in regional comparison. In that same year, Ryanair was the leading airline company by passenger traffic in Italy with over 37.8 million people transported. Besides Alitalia, Air Italy is the second leading Italy-based airline, which transported over 1.9 million people in 2018. Yet despite the growing airline market in Italy, the number of annual passengers carried by Air Italy declined between 2011 and 2018 sharply, down from 4.3 million people in 2011 to 1.9 million people transported in 2018.
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Research expert covering transportation and electronics