Expensive fuel: Sardinia on its kneesGiulia Reiso
Two years after the “first wave” of the virus now sadly known to us all with the name COVID-19, our country and our region are facing not only the health emergency but also an equally dangerous emergency which could have at least medium-long term effects for all of us, namely the financial crisis.
We have been called, sometimes reluctantly, to undergo important limitations that have drastically affected our private life. Limitations that we have accepted and, as a function of a higher common good, respected. Now, however, that these limitations were gradually fading with the (implicit) promise to return to “normality” soon, we all have to deal with a sudden war capable of profoundly affecting the socio-economic context of our Country and our Region.
The ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, in addition to claiming innocent victims among civilians and volunteers, has deeply destabilized the Italian entrepreneurial fabric, mainly made up of small and medium-sized enterprises belonging to the artisanal / industrial chain. Unfortunately, the explosive effects of this conflict are measured every day: the first value in which the most evident contractions are recorded is linked to exports, followed by the growing difficulties in finding raw materials which determine unsustainable increases in energy and fuel and, lastly, the severe limitations in the transport of goods which cause unsustainable delays in product deliveries. It is precisely the unstoppable increase in energy and fuel prices that has created, in addition to a dramatic decline in entrepreneurs’ confidence, strong tensions, especially in the transport sector. As a demonstration of this, in these hours many transporters have organized a block of the transport service determined, by the sudden increase in the price of diesel; the expensive fuel, in fact, would make the regular transport service excessively burdensome.
The Company can understand “humanly” the reasons behind the strike but cannot agree with them; the halt of the trucks and port activities (currently happening in Sardinia) can only worsen the already precarious national economic equilibrium. Failure to respect, due to the strike, the deliveries of perishable goods or, as in our case, of raw materials necessary and essential to meet national production needs will inevitably lead to the decision by many entrepreneurs to suspend production and activate, where possible, social safety nets such as the redundancy fund for personnel. Also due to the lack of confidence “in doing business in Italy”, many entrepreneurs, in the face of lack of solutions in combating expensive energy, expensive fuel, strikes, etc., could also decide to cease their business indefinitely with devastating damage to the local and national economy.
If we do not find quick and effective solutions, the financial crisis, is practically announced.
Maffei Sarda Silicati S.p.A., like many other Italian companies, despite the historical moment, continues to constantly receive orders from its customers and intends to do everything possible to continue to produce and serve them in the best possible way. To do this, however, it is necessary that the cost of energy, diesel and, more generally, all raw materials return to acceptable levels, thus allowing all market players to produce at sustainable costs and transporters to perform the logistic service. This is the only recipe to support the Italian production fabric in this delicate phase also in comparison with European competitors, much less subject to the increase in production costs. Failure or late intervention by the competent authorities will determine the economic collapse of Sardinia with very significant consequences for the whole country, as correctly highlighted by the letter sent by Confindustria Sardegna on 17 March 2022.
In light of the above, we strongly ask the Institutions and all Civil Parties to prepare effective economic measures to support all Italian companies (including transporters) in order to allow the regular conduct of business and therefore continue to generate value in the national interest.
The specific intervention that today, through this communication and in addition to the above, is requested of the Public Authorities (in particular the Ministry of Economic Development) is also embodied in the adoption of the appropriate measures so that the various Chambers of Commerce local are in a position to be able to remedy the various protests that may gradually arise and, therefore, are in a position to also be able to issue certificates attesting to the occurrence of Force Majeure events (as occurred during the initial phase of the pandemic). This is in order to reduce the prejudices, including economic ones, that our companies can suffer as a result of strikes, riots and demonstrations that can only occur if the situation does not change in the very short term.