News Autostrade, government ultimatum «Weekend proposal or revocation»

Autostrade, government ultimatum «Weekend proposal or revocation»

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There were two stone guests yesterday at the ministerial table the heads of the Autostrade company and the shareholder Atlantia sat down yesterday, while the stock lost 8.2% on the Stock Exchange, seeing itself asking for a definitive proposal within the weekend, for avoid revocation of the concession. The first politician, and the M5S, who would not even have called that table in the aftermath of the sentence of the Consulta which rejected Autostrade’s appeal on the exclusion from the reconstruction works of the Genoa bridge. For Di Maio’s movement, that would have been the best time to trigger the revocation of the concession with a return to the consistent image level. The contrast between the two souls of the majority only puts Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte back on the grill with the task of summarizing.

So, sitting yesterday, for an hour and a half, in front of the heads of cabinet of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Alberto Stancanelli and Economy, Luigi Carbone and the general secretary of Palazzo Chigi, Roberto Chieppa, the administrators of Atlantia and Autostrade, Carlo Bertazzo and Roberto Tomasi, found the most reasonable among the interlocutors, but also the most inflexible. The most convinced that the revocation should be avoided but also the most aware that the M5S must offer an alternative to the height. And therefore to bring home an agreement, what had been put on the table so far is no longer enough. The three government representatives immediately explained why, asking for an improvement of the proposal on four fronts: the tariffs, the ordinary and extraordinary maintenance works, the renunciation of any recourse and the resources to compensate for the damage. We have not talked about the sale of the majority of Autostrade, the sources of both sides agree. Of course, it would have been unrealistic to bring the subject of company control to a formal table.

But the second guest of stone is just that. A lot of work has been done so far on a state entrance, to the point of formulating various hypotheses and inconveniencing strong investors. Now even this may not be enough. And if the solution should be that Atlantia sells the majority in Autostrade, the one that has to be found is the formula that does not see the Benettons making hard money. For this reason, among the hypotheses there would be their dilution through a capital increase that would allow the realization of the necessary substantial investments, financed on a market that today the Milleproroghe decree precludes the company, whose rating has collapsed. Those who say that Autostrade’s problem is not capitalization but its ability to obtain supplies on the market, which would be resolved by sterilizing the Milleproroghe, opposes this hypothesis. And without forcing the state to take control of a company precisely when the collections are destined to drop and the investments to multiply.

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