For the Italian manufacturing industry and energy-intensive companies in particular, the current energy price levels are unsustainable. After having avoided producing at peak times of energy prices, the production system risks going towards a reduction in production, with the danger of causing a chain slowdown in Italian growth. This is the alarm launched by Giuseppe Pasini, president of the Feralpi Group, one of the main steel producers in Europe, specialized in the production of steels for construction and special applications, with a turnover of 1.24 billion euros in 2020 and beyond. 1,700 direct employees. To calm prices, Pasini told Adnkronos, the government must intervene with more incisive measures than the latest decree. And for its part, the European Union must plan a more united approach. In one year the cost of electricity increased by about 350%, “an unexpected increase”, explains Pasini. “Since December we try not to work in the hours when the cost of energy is the highest, stopping for about two or three hours a day, in order to calm down the cost a little”. But, the entrepreneur warns, “if the cost of energy were to remain at the levels of December and January, surely my company will go towards a reduction in production. The costs do not allow us to assimilate the jump in the price of the electricity tariff”. The situation for Italian manufacturing, he continues, “is not sustainable for long. We have tried to partially pass these costs on to our products and customers, but it is not certain that our customers will be able to do the same with end customers”. So much so that due to the surge in electricity and gas prices and production difficulties “there could be a slowdown in the country’s growth compared to 2021. This is not good at a time when there is growth and in which the Italy needs funds from the NRP to make it stable “, emphasizes Pasini. Especially if some governments, such as France and Germany, “intervened a little more massively than our government did with the latest decree”. For Pasini 1.7 billion euros “is very little to be able to intervene to alleviate these costs. For the short term, some better intervention is needed than the last decree. Our problem is today”. However, the president of the Feralpi Group says he is “confident that, beyond the measures that the government will want to take, there will also be a more structural intervention”. In particular, natural gas is “a very important resource for the energy and environmental transition to 2030 on which we depend. We must try to exploit, where possible, internal fields. It could be a great advantage”. Pasini is not against nuclear power, “on the contrary, but it is a medium-term solution. In the meantime, we must continue the system of renewables, which will not completely replace gas”.
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