Gentiloni's push on

Gentiloni's push on

While the Minister of European Affairs, Raffaele Fitto, is collecting the letters with proposals from the ministers on how to modify the Pnrr, the Commissioner for European Affairs urges Italy: "The problem is not denouncing delays but preventing them from occurring", he Paolo Gentiloni said yesterday speaking at the Trento Economics Festival. The third installment of loans to Italy, 19 billion, has not yet been released by Brussels. Tensions also weigh on the Mes, the reformed European fund to save states, which is only awaiting Rome's ratification to become operational. «In Italy I don't know why the Mes is lived like the Spectre. But this is not the case – says Gentiloni -. And nobody thinks that Italy should use it. My suggestion is to move towards ratification. It is a problem of reputation and respect for commitments».

The government appears to be in trouble

Returning to the Pnrr, Gentiloni is above all concerned about the next installments of 2023, from 16 and 18 billion. The government appears to be in trouble. Fitto has already clarified that not all the interventions in the Plan can be implemented by the end of 2026. Hence the request to government colleagues to formulate proposals to change the Plan, to be negotiated with the commission. A choice that fuels the attacks of the Pd, which asks the executive to report to Parliament what changes it intends to make to the Pnrr.

Don't lose the funding provided by the Pnrr

The line that emerges from the letters sent to Fitto is that of not losing the funding envisaged by the Pnrr (191.5 billion euros until 2026, of which 66.9 billion have already been collected, as Gentiloni recalls), but to move the late investments on the supplementary fund and EU cohesion funds, which have longer times, using the resources recovered for construction projects left out of the Plan. This is the case, for example, of investments in water pipelines, reported by the Minister of Infrastructure, Matteo Salvini. An intervention for which projects for around one billion are ready, which would be recovered by moving the construction of some railway sections to funds outside the Pnrr, which cannot be completed by 2026 (doubling of the Rome-Pescara and Orte-Falconara lines).

Directions to Fitto

Salvini has not yet sent his indications to Fitto because the government has just changed the heads of Trenitalia and Rfi, therefore a rapid monitoring of the works in progress is needed to suggest the necessary adjustments. The Ministry of Infrastructure is also in contact with the municipalities on the subject of local public transport, where the construction of garages for electric buses is delayed. On the school front, another criticality of the Pnrr, the Minister of Education, Giuseppe Valditara, asks to lower the targets currently set by the Plan for school construction: as well as on nursery schools, canteens and the safety of buildings. The downsizing, suggests the minister, should be proportional to the increase in prices in the public works sector. With the same money, in essence, fewer things can be done, because doing them today costs more than the Pnrr estimates.

The ratings

The Minister of the Environment, Gilberto Pichetto Fratin assures that no project within his competence will be eliminated. It will be assessed whether they are all feasible by 2026, to move some of them to other sources of funding if necessary. The Minister of Labour, Maria Calderone, says that as far as she is concerned "there are no delays" and that "any corrections are not waivers but an optimization of some tools". The Minister for Enterprise, Adolfo Urso, is also on the same line.

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