Tractor protest, Meloni: “Farmers? Defended well before they took to the streets”

“Rome-Pescara route will be done, resources removed from Pnrr identified”

Regarding the tractor protest”long before they took to the streets this government defended the agricultural sector from choices that risked being too ideological and pursuing the ecological transition with desertification”. This is what Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said during her speech in L’Aquila at the signing ceremony of the Agreement for development and cohesion between the government and the Abruzzo Region.

“Rome-Pescara route will be done, resources removed from Pnrr identified”

On the Rome-Pescara railway line “we are absolutely focused and attentive on what is among the most important infrastructures for the country”. “Funds had been foreseen in the Pnrr” to carry it out, “but then withdrawn” due to timing issues, which, however, “did not translate into the renunciation of such a strategic work. We withdrew the financing from the Pnrr, but the government he set to work to identify “substitute” resources: “I announce to you that the Roma-Pescara match will take place, thanks to the work of ministers Salvini and Fitto, all the resources needed to carry out the work have been identified. The Cipess will meet in the next few weeks.”

“Our warnings about the Pnrr fell on deaf ears, it was necessary to renegotiate it”

The “many warnings made about Italy’s spending capacity on the Pnrr, on the largest plan in Europe that was up to our country, have fallen on deaf ears”. “We have been accused of wanting to make Italy lose resources, but the facts speak clearly and say otherwise. Even on the need for the Pnrr to be renegotiated, it was described as something very dangerous, but for us it was our duty to do so”.

“Over 1.2 billion for almost 200 interventions in Abruzzo”

With today’s cohesion agreement, the Prime Minister said, “we are assigning 1.257 billion euros to Abruzzo and of the new agreements signed – 9 so far – this is the highest share assigned. These are important resources that are allocated to the financing of around 200 projects”. “I am sure that Abruzzo can still amaze, not only Italy but the world. And I will do my part.”

The Prime Minister was also given the miniature rose window of the Basilica of Collemaggio. The Basilica, in the heart of the Abruzzo capital, where the remains of Celestine V are kept – the only pontiff not to be buried in Rome – was hit hard by the earthquake that brought L’Aquila to its knees in April 2009, causing 309 deaths and 1,600 wounded. “It is a symbol of our land, but also a symbol of rebirth”, the Prime Minister was told, justifying the choice of the homage.

“In the past, out of 126 billion of EU funds only 46 were spent, we cannot afford it”

“When we came to government we did an in-depth analysis of the state of the resources of the Development and Cohesion Fund, the main resources for combating disparities and gaps between territories: many resources, co-financing, multi-year financing cycles, which were not always able to be spent and not always to spend everything. In the situation we find ourselves in, where resources are always lacking, we cannot afford to have them and not spend them.” The Prime Minister recalled how, of the 2014-2020 programming, “out of 126 billion, only 46 had been spent by 2022”, therefore “instead of reiterating a mechanism that had functioning problems, we implemented a comparison with all the Regions” to make “different and shared strategic choices”. Then, with the South decree, “development and cohesion agreements” were established, with priorities “shared” by the regions and the government, also to “avoid overlaps”. He also explained that this is where the decision to entrust the delegation of funds and the Pnrr to Minister Raffaele Fitto, so that the same ‘direction’ was behind it.

“We don’t give in to the depopulation of the villages”

“The villages and internal areas are places that retain their identity and guarantee the identity of Italy” recalls the Prime Minister. “We do not give up on the depopulation of these territories. We know there is still a lot to give and we are ready to do it.”