The Italian government vetoes the acquisition of Microtecnica by the French Safran. This was revealed by the transalpine company itself. Safran was informed of the Italian Government’s decision to exercise the Golden Power, thus opposing the sale of Microtecnica, the company that owns the activities in Italy of the Collins Aerospace group for which in July Safran presented a purchase proposal worth 1.8 billion dollars.
The reasons for golden power
According to Financial Times, in the decree the Italian government motivates the decision with the fear that Safran would not ensure priority to production lines of interest for national defense. The executive chaired by Giorgia Meloni also claims to have previously consulted with the German one who would have reported concerns regarding a possible interruption in the supply of spare parts and maintenance services for the Eurofighter and Tornado jets, included in the NATO defense programmes.
The exercise of golden power surprised Safran who, however, remains committed to the transaction and is working with all parties to determine appropriate next steps, it said in a statement. That the Italian veto was not foreseen, however, emerges from the statements entrusted to the British newspaper by the CEO of the French group, Olivier Andris. They take for granted the worst case scenario regarding our intentions to equally support and prioritize the Eurofighter, the manager underlined. rather ironic because we are already suppliers of the Eurofighter and other Italian defense programs through other subsidiaries.
The consequences on European alliances
Until now, golden power had been used above all to block operations by Chinese companies or, in any case, companies based outside the European Union. Safran, on the other hand, is a European company which, moreover, has the French state among its main shareholders, with a stake of 11.2%. Andris also said he was disconcerted by the opposition to the purchase of Microtecnica by a French group since until now the Italian company was part of the American defense giant Raytheon Technologies. a truly bad signal sent by Italy and Germany for the future of European collaboration in the defense sector.
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