Ance: “no to the monopoly of general contractors on the Recovery Plan works in Sicily and in the South”

April 7, 2021, 09:10 am

“Recovery”, Ance Sicilia: “more resources in the south as long as the benefits are collected in the north?”

“Why are everyone now in agreement on the” Recovery Plan? “, Asks Santo Cutrone, president of Ance Sicilia, who tries to give an answer:” Because, in the name of a prevailing tendency to nationalize the economy, there would be a agreement between the powerful lobbies of the North and politics: it is okay to give more resources to the South, as long as the benefits are collected in the North, through the general contractors, construction giants who now see the State at their side as shareholder and financier. All to the detriment of local businesses in the South and Sicily ”.

Ance Sicilia, therefore, says “no” to the establishment, in fact already outlined, of a monopoly of the general contractors of the North on the public works market in the South, in particular in Sicily, which completely excludes local companies from the possibility of participate in tenders, right now that, after ten years of emptiness, Rome is at least planning to finance the maintenance of road and railways, a voice that would give oxygen to small businesses exhausted by the crisis.

The national design, from what we learn from statements reported in the press, would be that of a framework agreement which, with the excuse of acting quickly and replicating the “Genoa model”, assigns directly to the general contractors all the interventions that will be financed with the ” Recovery Plan ”and also with the European resources of ordinary planning. You cannot pretend to invoke one “Faster and more efficient way of the authorization process” on the “Genoa model” to justify “A general contractor for road maintenance with a framework agreement that simplifies the management of the concessionaire”. So, with regard to Sicily, not only the large strategic infrastructures that are already entrusted in lots too high for local entrepreneurs: the general contractors would also have all road and railway maintenance at their complete disposal. No more competitions, no more rules and transparency, controls to the bare minimum. A line that, for example, has already found correspondence in the national government’s decision to postpone once again the entry into force of the European Bolkestein directive, which provides for the use of tenders for the assignment of motorway concessions, and to extend December 2021, for concessions that were not awarded by tender, the possibility of continuing to manage 40% of the maintenance of the motorway network in-house and to entrust only 60% of the works by tender to external companies.

“We oppose a clear entrepreneurial plan – declares Santo Cutrone – which is taking shape at the national level, finding political and institutional convergence, and it is against this operation that a strong stance by the Region is needed with the solid support of all political forces, of majority and opposition, in the common interest of safeguarding the future of local businesses, construction workers and their families. And for this we appeal to the Sicilian Region and to the other Regions of the South so that tomorrow, in the meeting organized by Prime Minister Mario Draghi on the “Recovery Plan”, they protest against this plan which, once again, relies on local anti-business sentiment typical of certain politics “.

“The construction giants – concludes Cutrone – want to get their hands on every cent that will come from the European Union, relegating local companies to the role of subcontractors for life. We will report to the European Commission any agreement to this effect that would blatantly violate the guidelines of the EU Commission itself on the mandatory use of resources in favor of reducing the economic and social gap in the South ”.