The government is taking time on the beach grain. Caught between the diktats of Europe, which push for liberalization, and the pressure of the Lega and Forza Italia which aim to extend the terms for the tenders. The majority meeting took place today: it was decided to extend the delegation to the government on the sector, and to convene an inter-ministerial table to untangle a complicated matter. Which doesn’t agree with those who can’t wait to plant electoral flags.
The current beach concessions expire on December 31st. And the majority is at the crossroads. Satisfy Europe by displeasing the electorate, or challenge Brussels by keeping the polls good? On the one hand, yet another postponement can be decided, as requested in the amendments by Lega and Forza Italia to the milleproroghe: a choice that would be rejected by the EU, which in all likelihood would punish us with the infringement procedure. Or you could sell it to Bolkestein and certify the surrender. The third way, the one that the prime minister is trying to take, is to take a breather in order to develop a structural reform of the sector, which is not “temporary”, as Meloni said from Algiers. A tortuous road, which the government intends to travel with caution, listening to the interested categories, always keeping a direct line with Brussels through Minister Fitto, and trying to convince the government allies to reformulate the amendments.
The path is narrow, especially with the regional ones at the gates. And perhaps the clarification from Brussels, which reminds us that this matter is not linked to the Pnrr, is a small lifeline to hang on for a surplus of reflection. The idea would be to craft a far-reaching solution, not too lax to stiffen EU bureaucrats, but not too fiscal to have barricades built by a category, that of seaside resorts, which has always been a friend of the centre-right. After the revolt of the gas station attendants, moreover, the majority cannot afford another piece of the hard core of the moderate electorate to put itself on a war footing.
Beyond the technicalities, the vexed question of the seaside resorts is an exemplary rock on which the stature of the government and the compactness of a majority that harbors its divisions will be measured. In short, a test of maturity on the contents. Whatever the point of fall, there will in any case be a price to pay, even in terms of popularity. It’s up to Giorgia Meloni and her team to know how to dose the right amount of diplomacy in this hairpin bend. Perhaps by giving up some points of consensus, in the name of a pragmatism worthy of a mature government, without inferiority complexes either at home or abroad..