Allegrini 2018

Mario Draghi: health, economics, and the environment, the core of Government action

“We want to leave a better planet, not just a better currency. Today, unity is not an option, unity is a duty, guided by love for Italy”
Health, Economics, Environment at the center of Government action: Mario Draghi’s speech

Mario Draghi, Italy’s new Prime Minister, delivered his programmatic speech in the Senate of the Republic, where, in the late evening, confidence will be voted after parliamentary discussions (while tomorrow it will be the turn of the Chamber of Deputies, ed.). In the central part of his speech, together with the management of the health Pandemic emergency, he indicated, “protecting the future of the environment, and reconciling it with progress and social well-being, requires a new approach where the different faces of a multifaceted challenge include digitization, agriculture, health, energy, aerospace, cloud computing, schools and education, territorial protection, biodiversity, global warming and the greenhouse effect, and are at the center of the ecosystem in which all human actions will develop”.
Government action, in Draghi’s secular and pragmatic vision, is centered on the Italian and European strategy of protecting the environment and fighting climate change. Further, Draghi has emphasized several times that management of the Covid-19 emergency must first deal with job protection, especially of women and young people, the categories most affected, supporting economic activities of the sectors most penalized by the Pandemic and the limitations to control it. He continued, not making any specific reference to this or that category, expressing the clear desire to return everyone to normal working conditions, as soon as possible. However, he also stated that continuing to support everyone, without distinction, as well as not being possible, would be a strategic mistake.
“Climate change, like the Pandemic, penalizes some productive sectors while there is no expansion in other sectors to compensate. We must, therefore, be the ones to guarantee this expansion and we must do it now. The economic policy response to climate change and the Pandemic will have to be a combination of structural policies that facilitate innovation. Financial policies will have to facilitate access to businesses capable of growing to capital and credit, and expansive monetary and fiscal policies that facilitate investment and create demand for the new sustainable businesses that have been created. We want to leave a better planet, not just a better currency”.
First of all, health, paying particular attention to strengthening the vaccination campaign (many business categories have indicated it as the main issue to be able to restart activities, ed.), to be faster and more efficient, not only finding the necessary doses of vaccine, but also increasing places where vaccines can be administered, as we did for swabs. The economy, therefore, will be the priority of the Italian Government that is openly "pro-European and Atlantic", said Draghi. He continued, saying he will look at both the health emergency management, and the structural reforms of tax authorities, “to be reformed all together and not, instead, changing one tax at a time”, and of justice and public administration, which must be stronger and more efficient, and much more. Besides, of course, managing the 209 million euros for the “Recovery Plan”, the majority of which will be invested in all green policies. There will be a transversal approach and the co-benefits logic across multiple sectors, Draghi said, opening to a new relationship between public and private, inviting private individuals to bring primarily skills and innovations, rather than capital. Draghi also expressed his belief that the Pandemic is not a simple interruption between a before and after equal to each other, but that many things will change. “Some growth models will have to change, even in our country. For instance, the tourism model was an activity that before the Pandemic accounted for 14% of the total of our economic activities. Companies and workers in that sector must be helped to emerge from the disaster created by the Pandemic. However, we must remember that our tourism will have a future if we do not forget that it thrives on our ability to preserve, or rather, at least not waste, art cities, places and traditions that successive generations over many centuries have been able to preserve and have handed down to us”. Draghi pointed out that the commitment towards sustainability, for Italy, will also have a strong International projection, “from last December until the end of 2021, Italy will exercise, for the first time, the Presidency of G20. The program, which will involve the entire government structure, revolves around three pillars: “People, Planet, Prosperity.” Italy will have the responsibility to lead the Group towards the exit from the Pandemic, and to re-launch green and sustainable growth for the benefit of all. It will be about rebuilding and better rebuilding. Together with the United Kingdom - with which we have parallel presidencies of the G7 and the G20 this year - we will focus on sustainability and the “green transition” in the perspective of the next Conference of the Parties on climate change (COP 26), with particular attention to actively involving the younger generations, through the “Youth4Climate” event”. Draghi quoted Pope Francis and, among the statesmen, Camillo Benso di Cavour, who was the first President of the Council of Ministers of the Kingdom of Italy, in 1861, as well as a great wine lover and producer, “the Government will make reforms but will also address the emergency. There is no before and after. We are aware of Cavour’s teachings: reforms completed in time, rather than weakening authority, strengthen it. In the meantime, though, we must take care of those who are suffering now, those who have lost their jobs today, or are forced to close their businesses”. “This is the third government of the legislature. There is nothing”, concluded Draghi, “that suggests that I can do my job without the convinced support of this Parliament. Their support does not rest on political alchemy but on the spirit of sacrifice with which women and men have faced the last year, on their vibrant desire to restart and come back stronger, and on young people’s enthusiasm who want a country that will let them achieve their dreams. Today, unity is not an option; unity is a duty. But it is a duty guided by what I am certain unites us all: love for Italy”.

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