Alitalia’s Rising Loss Risks Deterring Air France Stake Increase

Air France to upgrade cabins on Chicago-Paris flights

The Air France premium economy cabin is getting seats with a new multi-position footrest, as well as a new entertainment system.

It is also the first time that a France’s head of state will arrive in New Zealand to further strengthen the ties between the two countries and discuss the common interests in the South Pacific. French President Francois Hollande (Reuters) Related Articles New Zealand Celebrities Support Deep Sea Oil Drilling Protests (VIDEO) The president of France will arrive sometime on Nov 2014. The announcement of the planned visit comes after President Hollande said he will be attending the G20 summit in Queensland, Australia . Initial talks are ongoing about his travel to New Zealand. The news of the French leader’s visit indicates that France sees the increasing importance of the South Pacific where it has commercial, territorial and security interests. Reports said that France is growing concerned of the South Pacific’s instability. French Polynesia and New Caledonia are the two big French territories demanding their independence from the mother land. A French diplomatic source has confirmed that the French president welcomed the idea of discussing its interests and to include New Zealand on his agenda after the G-20 summit. Must Read Advertising on Pinterest with Promoted Pins Sponsorship Link France tended to focus only on emerging economies like China , India and Brazil as well as other countries in Europe. His planned visit to New Zealand would show the rest of the world that France has become “multi-polar”. Mr Hollande’s visit would coincide with New Zealand’s commemoration of the beginning of World War I when 18,500 New Zealanders died. Many were killed in the Battle of Somme which took place in North Paris and at Passchendaele in Belgium. France, the world’s fifth-largest economy and the second-biggest market in the European Union , can be a potentially viable ally for New Zealand. France has excellent clout for being a founder member of the 28-nation bloc. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key went to France this week to seek support from the country to begin free trade between New Zealand and the European Union . This was an issue that has been on the backburner for several years. However, Mr Key admitted it the deal is still a long way off but he remains optimistic it will push through soon. He said New Zealand still has a lot of work to do for this to happen. To contact the editor, e-mail:

France President to Visit New Zealand for the First Time, PM John Key Seeks EU Free Trade Agreement

The Italian airline proposed investors boost funding by completing a subscription of 55 million euros through a bond convertible into stock. 14 to vote on the increase. Air France members on the Alitalia board opposed the plan, news agency Ansa reported, without saying where it got the information. An Air France spokesman declined to comment. Air France said Sept. 23 it would await more information from the Italian carriers board before committing to any move. Hiring Advisers The relatively small capital increase being sought suggests the move is only a short or mid-term solution, said Yan Derocle, an analyst at Oddo Securities in Paris. Air France has hired Lazard Ltd. (LAZ) and Mediobanca SpA (MB) as advisers to consider its options on Alitalia, Italys Messaggero reported this week, without saying where it obtained the information. Alitalia in turn has hired Gruppo Banca Leonardo as seeks to end operating losses in 2014. While owning Alitalia would give Europes largest airline access to one of the regions biggest aviation markets and help feed trans-Atlantic routes, the need for capital comes as Air Frances domestic unit struggles to stem its own losses.

The African Union has asked financial, logistical and technical support from the United Nations, and senior U.N. officials recommended last month that the U.N. Security Council approve this request. ‘TOMORROW WILL BE TOO LATE’ France plans to draft a resolution to put to the Security Council in October to increase support for the U.N. Integrated Peacebuilding Office, or BINUCA, in the Central African Republic, allowing it to go beyond Bangui, providing it with rights observers and asking U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to report on how to move forward. Paris then wants a second resolution to give U.N. backing to the African Union force and ultimately would like the African mission to be turned into a U.N. peacekeeping force. It was unclear how quickly a deal could be reached on a first resolution because French diplomats said some Security Council members were hesitant to move forward because of questions on financing and responsibility for the mission. “I think that the large majority of the Security Council are in favour, but the modalities still need to be explained,” Fabius said, adding financing could be raised through donations. Power said the United States strongly favoured the deployment of the African Union peacekeeping force and was “exploring ways to furnish bilateral technical and financial aid.” She said Washington also supported boosting BINUCA.

France pushes for U.N. action on Central African Republic

Details about changes in Air France’s business and first class cabins won’t be revealed until the spring of 2014, but Air France said its new economy class will feature a new seat that provides an additional inch of legroom, as well as a revamped headrest and wider tray table. Each seat also will have a power plug and headphone holder. Seats in Air France’s premium economy cabin(a dedicated section first introduced in 2009) will be upgraded and outfitted with an improved seat cushions and multi-position footrests. A new entertainment system will offer high-definition programming and more than 1,000 hours of music, movies and TV on demand. Premium economy also is getting an upgraded meal service with an additional hot entree selection, as well as candies and ice cream. Air France currently operates its daily nonstop flight between Chicago’s O’Hare Airport and Paris on an Airbus 330 widebody plane. An Air France spokesman said Delta Airlines (NYSE: DAL) will operate the service from October through the slower winter months, before Air France-branded planes take over the route again in the spring. Delta and Air France are both members of the SkyTeam global airline alliance. No decision has yet been made about what aircraft Air France will use on the Chicago-Paris route next spring, the spokesman said. Air France said that with the exception of the upgraded premium economy meal service, which began this month, the rest of the onboard cabin enhancements will begin to roll out in the summer, 2014. Air France’s fleet of Boeing 777 aircraft will be the first outfitted with the redesigned and upgraded cabins, a process that is expected to take two years to complete. Related links: