The President of the Government has tried to reinforce the political profile of the Government with the changes made in the Council of Ministers, but the economic weight is far from playing a secondary role. A total of 10 portfolios will structure the actions of the new Executive made up of PSOE and Sumar in this area, headed by some new faces such as the one who will be the new Minister of Industry, Jordi Hereu, current president of Hispasat and former mayor of Barcelona. . , in the period 2006-2011. The Catalan becomes the only representative of the PSC in La Moncloa, which represents a loss of power in quantitative terms – they previously supervised Transport and Culture – but represents a strategic leap to seek alliances in the industrial and energy sectors, compared to To the discrepancies between these companies and Teresa Ribera.
Hereu will return to politics more than a decade after having said goodbye, in February 2012 and with an important profile, due to his connection with the Spanish Society of Industrial Participations (SEPI). The Board of Directors of the public company proposed the Catalan as a director of Hispasat in September 2020 – in which he has a 7.41% stake, which was the previous step to appointing him as president of the entity a month later. . Now, almost three years later, he will take over from the Canarian Héctor Gómez at the head of a ministry that will be key in Pedro Sánchez’s strategy to reindustrialize Spain to achieve full employment.
In addition, the Catalan has the task of channeling more than 2,000 million euros of European funds through PERTE, strategic projects based on public-private collaboration and aimed at modernizing the economy, among which stand out the electric vehicle. Here you must also carry out the Industry Law, committed to Brussels within component 12 of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan and linked to the sixth payment of the Next Generation. In the initial schedule, Spain had agreed to approve the reform of the 1992 law before December 2023, however, when the last general elections were called, the initiative had not even been submitted to the Congress of Deputies.
Important presence of people related to the PSC in the SEPI
The general secretary of the PSOE thus grants a strategic seat to the PSC, with whom he maintains a good relationship given that it is currently headed by the former Minister of Health during the pandemic, Salvador Illa. However, Hereu is not the only one close to the PSC with a presence in the SEPI, so the influence of this signing goes beyond compliance with a ‘territorial quota’, which Sánchez has already shown does not follow when it comes to make his decisions, a difference from his predecessors. Companies with participation in the public company, such as Indra or Enagás, are also chaired by men from the Socialist Party of Catalonia (PSC), as are the large companies in the transport sector, Renfe and Aena, despite the fact that this portfolio is going to pass . to Óscar Puente, former socialist mayor of Valladolid.
The new Government can find in Marc Murtra, at the head of Indra since 2021 and above all, Antonio Llardén, president of Enagás since 2007, two ways to alleviate the tensions generated throughout the previous legislature by the third vice president and head of Transition Ecology and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera with part of the sector. However, Sánchez has not lost the confidence that she attended the general elections as ‘number two’ of the PSOE for Madrid, since she maintains her position as third vice president and has not considered replacing her. However, it seems that the new configuration of the Executive also seeks to establish some counterweights that balance the agenda demanded by Brussels and the strategy of the energy companies.
Calviño’s Ministry is a nod to the employers
The left-wing coalition, made up of PSOE and Sumar, does not begin the legislature with the best relationship with businessmen, something that Sánchez seems to keep in mind and that he has also tried to repair. The businessmen have harshly criticized the pacts closed by the PSOE with the different pro-independence formations (PNV, ERC and Junts) but also with Sumar, for entering into matters pertaining to social dialogue. Therefore, the name change on the label of the portfolio that Nadia Calviño will collect seems to be a nod to the private sector, at least in the face of employers. The first presidency of the Government leaves behind the name of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation to become known as Economy, Commerce and Business, as announced by the President of the Government from La Moncloa.
Although the CEOE employers’ association has not reacted to this news, the appointment of the economist until the presidency of the European Investment Bank (EIB) is resolved does seem to pursue the rapprochement of positions after the friction between Yolanda Díaz and José Luis Escrivá . with businessmen. Calviño stands out for his technical profile that has served as a brake on many of the proposals or claims of Unidas Podemos during the last legislatures and his contribution has been key to weaving agreements in which the employers’ associations have also finally lent their signature, such as the labor reform or the ERTE, created to save jobs during the pandemic.
The Catalan employers’ association Foment del Treball has issued a statement this Monday in which it demands from the new Government an industrial policy “with capital letters”, as well as a new perspective on the figure of the businessman and his contribution on the social level in a way that avoids The attacks or disqualifications leveled by the ‘purple’ wing of the previous Council of Ministers. Catalan businessmen point to “broad agreements” as a way to promote economic growth and job creation, while calling for “viable and realistic” proposals on housing. At the same time, Pimec requests that legislation be legislated “thinking first” of smaller companies and that the most representative business organizations of the autonomous communities be given participation in social dialogue.