(AGI) Rome, Feb 19 - A national program for Italy's airportswith extensive plans to expand the network was approved onThursday at a conference between the central state, regions,and autonomous provinces of Trento and Bolzano. The NationalAirport Plan was presented by the Minister for Infrastructureand Transportation, Maurizio Lupi. It had already been approvedby the competent parliamentary commissions and the cabinet onSeptember 30 of 2014, and will now be submitted to the Italianpresident for final signature. The plan sets out 10 traffichubs, based on a maximum distance of two hours by car from astrategically important airport. The ten areas are: 1)North-West; 2) North-East; 3) Central-North; 4) Central Italy;5) Campania; 6) Mediterranean-Adriatic; 7) Calabria; 8) WesternSicily; 9) Eastern Sicily; 10) Sardinia. Three intercontinentalairports were identified in these zones - Rome Fiumicino, MilanMalpensa, and Venice - as well as nine stopovers in theEuropean network: Turin Caselle, on the condition that itcreates a joint system for the AV/AC railway network with MilanMalpensa to generate synergy for mutual development in theNorth-West hub; the trio of Bologna, Pisa, and Firenze,assuming Pisa and Firenze unite their operations; Naples; Bari;Lamezia Terme; Palermo; Catania; and Cagliari. Each hubcontains airports considered of national interest. These are:Milan Linate, Bergamo, Brescia, Cuneo, Genoa, Verona, Treviso,Trieste, Rimini, Parma, Ancona, Rome Ciampino, Perugia,Pescara, Salerno, Brindisi, Taranto, Reggio Calabria, Crotone,Comiso, Trapani, Pantelleria, Lampedusa, Olbia, and Alghero.The airports fulfill the two requirements of being aspecialised stopover and being recognisably functional withinthe system, evidenced by industrial and financial plansdemonstrating the airport's stability and adequate indicatorsof a potential solvency, at least over a three-year period. Thelack of these conditions will result in the airport beingremoved from the national interest list. The label is alsoattributed to ports of call that guarantee accessibility toperipheral regions and developing or inconvenient areas thatare otherwise unreachable via other national transportationmethods, particularly railways. The national plan alsoestablishes the state's investment strategy for infrastructureconnecting the airports. (AGI) . .