The Andalusian parliamentarians of the Partido Popular of Almeria, Julia Ibáñez and Maribel S. Torregrosa, together with the Mayor of Macael, Raúl Martínez, and the secretary of Mines of the PP of Almería and delegate of Economy, Finance and European Funds and Industrial Policy and Energy, Guillermo Casquet, have held a meeting with the Association of Marble Entrepreneurs in which they have transferred that the Popular Parliamentary Group will defend both in Congress and in the Andalusian Parliament an initiative so that as a matter of urgency, the Spanish Government to include the primary mining sector in the support measures established in Royal Decree-Law 6/2022, of 29 March, and in Royal Decree-Law 20/2022 of 27 December, so that it can benefit from fuel discounts, as is the case with other sectors such as agriculture and fishing.
This is an initiative that would mean a respite for the primary mining sector, which has been discriminated against by the Government of Pedro Sánchez on two occasions, despite the fact that 70% of the monthly expenditure of marble entrepreneurs goes towards the diesel that is used to power the machinery used to work in the quarries and the vehicles used to transport this raw material.
The PP MP explains that every day it is more difficult to operate in an increasingly competitive international market, which is why it is necessary to demand measures such as the 20 cents discount on a litre of fuel to promote this mining activity on an equal footing with other activities in the primary sector that do enjoy it.
Julia Ibáñez stresses that this is a sector made up mostly of small companies, mainly family businesses, with few workers, exploiting quarries of great potential, and despite this, the natural stone sector has been able to adapt to recent events that have had a harsh impact on the Spanish economy and whose responsiveness has been key to adapting to the new framework and the new needs of the market.
“From the PP of Almeria we are extremely concerned that this good know-how and the entrepreneurial spirit of companies, families and region will be left behind by erroneous decisions of the Government of Pedro Sánchez such as excluding this sector in the fuel discounts. That is why we are going to defend in the Industry and Energy Commission this Proposition No of Law, requesting the discount of 20 cents per litre of fuel for this strategic sector, an initiative that we hope will be supported by all the political groups”, he assured.
For her part, Maribel S. Torregrosa stressed that both she and Julia Ibáñez are going to convey to the Andalusian Government each and every one of the demands that have been made by the Association of Marble Entrepreneurs during the meeting held in Macael.
S. Torregrosa explained that the Andalusian Government and the PP of Almeria are in constant contact with the association and that “there are many projects underway that will bear fruit in the coming months”.
In addition, he has denounced the mistreatment of the Government of Pedro Sánchez to a sector as powerful as the natural stone sector, which has been left out of the fuel subsidies despite being a strategic primary sector.
“From the PP of Almeria we will continue to defend the interests of the people of Almeria and the entrepreneurs who work with natural stone, generating wealth and employment in the Marble Region and the rest of the province”, he concludes.
Finally, the president of the Association of Marble Entrepreneurs of Andalusia (AEMA), Jesús Posadas, has claimed the region and the marble sector as the great centre of transformation of natural stone “that we are and of which we are a reference” and has pointed out as challenges to “remain competitive in a globalised world” the “digitisation of processes, energy efficiency, reindustrialisation, product innovation and dual training”. He also highlighted the “age-old roots” of an industry which, he said, should be considered strategic and which needs the collaboration of each and every one of the administrations in the face of the setbacks of recent years.