Atlantica Yield solar plant, in the Sevillian town of Sanlúcar la Mayor.PACO PUENTES / EL PAÍS
The Spanish multinational Abengoa is maintaining contacts with the Valencian Government to move its headquarters, which is currently located in Seville, to the Valencian Community.
The Valencian president, the socialist Ximo Puig, met yesterday in Valencia with Gonzalo Urquijo, president of the firm specialized in the infrastructure, energy and water sectors, to complete the operation.
The news has jumped today in the control session of the Valencian Courts in Puig's response to the PP spokesperson, Isabel Bonig.
The head of the Consell has indicated that they are "trying to bring investments" that are now based in other areas and that they are "negotiating with a multinational to change the headquarters to the Valencian Community."
Abengoa's management and minority parties agree to postpone the trial on the rescue plan
Valencian Government sources assure that it was the multinational that contacted the presidency of the Generalitat to study the possibilities of changing its headquarters.
And they frame the decision in the political "stability" of the Valencian Community, recalling that La Caixa already moved its headquarters in full
to Valencia, where Bankia's headquarters are also located (before its merger), while Banco de Sabadell did the same in Alicante, after buying Banco CAM.
The Valencian Institute of Finance, led by the economist Manuel Illueca, is in charge of studying the calendar and the realization of an operation that would have the approval of the Government chaired by the socialist Pedro Sánchez, according to sources from the negotiations.
Although the talks initially focus on the transfer of the headquarters, the possibility of establishing new manufacturing lines in Valencian territory, linked to European infrastructure and sustainability projects, is also being considered.
The difficult relations between the multinational, which is going through serious financial problems, and the Andalusian government, to the point of having been publicly confronted, are also pointed out as a reason for the intention to change cities.
Making public the denials with the Generalitat would also be a way of putting pressure on the Andalusian Junta.
The rescue plan agreed by the president of the company, Gonzalo Urquijo, with creditors and suppliers, counted on the Junta de Andalucía to contribute 20 million euros to which it had verbally committed, according to the company.
However, Andalusian Government sources deny that commitment and argue that they cannot find formulas to transfer that amount.
The company has been forced to seek other solutions, among other things because the central government had subordinated the participation of ICO and Cesce (Spanish Export Credit Insurance Company), which finance the contribution of 530 million in bank loans, to the presence of the Board.
The Generalitat is aware of the difficulties that Abengoa is going through, but it is pointed out that it is a multinational with great potential with 14,000 employees, 3,000 of them in Spain, and that it is now surviving thanks to public injection.
The board of the parent company of the Sevillian group was dismissed on the 17th, in an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders at the initiative of AbengoaShares for being against its proposals in the salvation plan.
At the moment, Gonzalo Urquijo continues to lead the company that he presides over.
Urquijo, however, also chairs the Abenewco1 subsidiary, which is the one that controls the business and where he has locked in with his board while waiting for what happens at the next extraordinary meeting scheduled for December 22.
Sources from the Andalusian Board point out that “the 20 million euros that Abengoa claims represent slightly more than 3% of the total amount of the financial operation that the company needs, so it does not seem reasonable that the legal impossibility of obtaining said amount is reason to leave Andalusia ”.
"Those 20 million cannot be given not for lack of political will of the Junta de Andalucía but because there is so far no favorable report from the legal services to said operation", they recall.
In addition, they affect “the disastrous experiences of previous governments, some already tried and others prosecuted, such as Isofoton or the Avales
to companies of doubtful viability, making legal services extremely cautious when it comes to give the ok to an operation of this nature ”.
The general secretary of the Andalusian PSOE and leader of the opposition, Susana Díaz, has already reacted to the news announced that she will ask the Board for “responsibilities” if the Abengoa headquarters are moved outside the community, after confirming the interest of the Generalitat Valenciana to have her in their territory. In a message on his profile on the social network Twitter Díaz has described this as "very bad news for Andalusia, for its economy and employment" and has assured that "the lack of commitment of the Andalusian Government costs our land dearly in the worst possible moment ”. "We will hold the Board responsible for not preventing the relocation of Abengoa," concluded the socialist regional leader.