Enrico Mattei Enrico Mattei
Enrico Mattei

speeches - first part



AWARD OF THE HONORARY CITIZENSHIP OF MATELICA

Shared Theatre June 28, 1953


This honorary citizenship is a reason for pride and a reason for emotion.
Usually, honorary citizenship is given to illustrious strangers. I am neither an illustrious man nor a stranger. I was not born within your walls, it is true: but I came to live there when I was so young that, it can be said, except for the birth certificate, all the rest of my life, both here and elsewhere, derives from this environment.
My youth was carried out and tempered in the peaceful and hardworking company of the people of Matelica: and from the sweetness of the hills that surround us, and which our strong and wise farmers have transformed in a fertile garden, that calmness in facing the events that assists me originates and it helps me in the toughest events.
It is with you, perhaps without success, that I have tried to learn the tenacity in the job, the thrift, the sobriety, and that tendency to march directly, without mischief and without subterfuge that often confuses the opponents, when they believe that the Matelicesi are similar to them.
[...] little I could do for you: but I have never forgotten Matelica and the Matelicesi [...].
I don't promise you anything. My activity takes place on a national level, and I would be unfair if I asked you for an easy applause with as many easy promises. My work to develop the production of hydrocarbons and geothermal vapors, to prevent speculators from turning them to their own exclusive profit, to give birth to new industries, cannot be done here.
But I am sure that even my fellow citizens will have their share of the advantage, in brotherhood with all the other Italians, in the same christian ideals of homeland, freedom, well-being. [...]



THE MUTUAL AID WORKER SOCIETY

Matelica August 5, 1962


[...] Since fifty-sixty years ago in the workers' society of Matelica close to workers, all citizens stepped in, white collars and owners, the latter, against the payment of the modest quotas, did not require the payment of the services, simply meaning to recognize, with their presence, the social and fraternal value of the institution. [...]
In the Mutual Aid Society, on the other hand, the great principle of fraternity, which knows no boundaries, neither of race nor of thought, is affirmed and perpetuated.
We will visit today the works for the expansion and modernization of the old people's hospice, created around the time of the Mutual Aid Society, for the munificence of a wealthy city benefactor. The hospice expresses a different but equally important system of solidarity between those who possess and those who do not possess, [...], a duty towards those who, having dedicated their entire lives to work, have reached their late years. The society must thank and honour. [...]
Our world, we all see it, has come by acquiring a skeptical and superficial appearance for the eminence that worries about daily life, the anxiety of money and power, antagonisms and even oppression have assumed. However, it is a matter of consolation to also recognize the persistent vitality of some generous trees that will not have to die. [...]



AGAINST METHANE AND OIL BOARDING

Rome, Chamber of Deputies, morning session, 26 October 1949


Honourable members of parliament!
[...] It is added and it is argued that the mining activity, besides being risky, is also too expensive, too long energy draining, for the State to be able to walk there, sacrificing efforts and money. But at the same time, four hundred permit requests, as Minister Lombardo said, have been put forward for the search for hydrocarbons in Italy. That is to say, there are at least four hundred firms that would like to ruin themselves in this business to save the Italian state!
It is also said that mining is too difficult for the state to undertake it instead of private individuals, as if it were impossible for the Italian state to organize efficient economic bodies and secure technicians of value, as has been done in many countries with equally favourable results as from us. And it is pretended to forget that all the gas fields of great importance and the only industrial-scale oil field that have been found so far belong to the management of the research carried out by the Azienda Generale Italiana Petroli on behalf of the State.
It is a simple factual observation that, in the face of these results, those achieved by researchers who most boast their merits by means of printed cartoons are reduced to things of very small scope. [...]



DISCUSSION OF THE DRAWING LAW ON THE CONSTRUCTION AND OPERATION OF OIL PIPELINES AND GAS PIPELINES

Rome, Chamber of Deputies, 8 August 1951


[...] At the moment, at the mouths of the wells, we have a production of 7 and a half million m3 of methane per day, which corresponds to over 100,000 q of coal per day, at an economic price, because methane is sold with 3.5% savings. Now, if we do not deal with the problem of transport and that of distribution, the problem of production remains firm, because these three questions are linked together. [...]
The problem is important in order to methane to reach consumption. The gas pipeline network has already been set up. Starting from Upper Italy to the Gothic line, 1000 km of natural gas pipelines are already in operation, 600 under construction and another 1600 to be completed by 1952. [...] Already a long time ago, I said that it was not necessary to arrive at an industrialization of the Po Valley by neglecting the Centre-South, but that a gradual development had to be taken into account because methane had to be sold at the same price in both Genoa and Naples. Now only the State can regulate all this matter.
[...] The State Company [...] wants to distribute methane at the same price to all industries [...].
In four or five years, with the organization that created the State Company, all the industries located in the Po Valley, Veneto, Emilia, Lombardy, Liguria, Piedmont, will be connected and will be able to operate on natural gas.



AWARD OF THE HONORIS CAUSA DEGREE IN MINING ENGINEERING

Turin, Polytechnic, July 5, 1953


[...] Finally on June 1, 1952, with an austere radio-controlled ceremony, Turin received the first methane, which, simultaneously, became available for all 1500 industrial companies gravitating in the economic radius of the pipeline and reachable with derivations from it. [...]
Today, the ancient capital wanted to respond with due tribute to one of its traditional knightly gestures, symbolically addressed to my person.
But in receiving this parchment as a highly coveted trophy, I take it over on behalf of the many thousands of men, technicians and workers, who work in state-owned oil companies, for which I have the supreme responsibility.



THE ACTIVITY AND WORK OF THE STATE COMPANY FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE NATIONAL COLLECTIVITY

Milan, January 21, 1954, press conference


[...] Actual supply of consumption of 10 million m3 of methane per day. 10 million m3 of methane per day equals 150,000 q per day of coal, which is the equivalent of three ships per day of 5000 t each.
Before the use of methane as fuel, these ships arrived in Italy from foreign countries from which we were importers. Ships entered and precious foreign currency came out, which remains in our house today.
The activity of the State Company was not limited to the methane field alone but has also developed in the petrol and liquid gas sector.
From gasoline and crude oil coming from Cortemaggiore wells, were obtained, in 1953, 60,000 t of excellent Italian fuel, which was distributed through the network of service distributors of the Azienda Generale Italiana Petroli.
In the same period, the Agipgas organization, which has the task of distributing liquid gas cylinders for domestic and artisanal uses, quickly reached a very wide diffusion [...] both because it had a considerably lower price than that of the other companies [...] and it has removed the burdensome weight of the security deposit for the cylinders, deposit that for the more modest categories represented a considerable sacrifice.
The Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi will shortly begin the realization of vast programs in the field of methane chemistry.



ECONOMIC POLICY PROBLEM OF HYDROCARBONS

Piacenza, 9-12 September 1954, Third national conference on the uses of methane


[...] Economic competition, you know, has its strict laws, and is often characterized by a harshness of relationships that is commensurate with the interests at stake. We have experienced this in the last nine years, and we have continued to walk our way, without looking back, aware of having a duty to do towards the country that rose again and saw methane as one of the tools of its technical and economic renewal. [...]
And among the capital supports that have supported our hard work to date, I remember with emotion that of the great politician who today Italy mourns as the one who redeemed her from the
abyss of ignominy in which they had thrown her, are words of Giorgio Bidault, first the excess of pride then the excess of punishment. I speak of Alcide De Gasperi, to whose memory I send a touched, reverent greeting. De Gasperi, in his generous understanding, frequently repeated that the development of methane, as it was taking place first through the work of AGIP, then through the action of ENI, was the most interesting thing that Italy produced after the war. Almost emphatic words, for a cold and realizing man like he was. [...]
They will still attack us, they will still try to cross the road: but the day will come, I am sure, in which it will be recognized that a serious mistake would have been not to leave the wealth of hydrocarbons of the Po Valley under management to the State and not to have develop them develop into an organic production complex.



AGREEMENTS WITH THE STANDARD OIL COMPANY FOR SYNTHETIC RUBBER AND NITROGEN FERTILIZERS

New Jersey, January 29 - February 5, 1955


Mr. President [Eugene Holman], [...]
Personally, I consider it a great privilege to be the head of an Italian group that establishes intense business relationships with one of the largest and most important industrial chemical companies in the world.
It seems to me that I have to interpret the stipulation of these agreements above all as a courtesy used to Italy, which in the ten years since the end of the war has openly manifested and demonstrated its desire for economic rise, its loyalty to the democratic and peaceful ideals of the West, its desire and need for industrial cooperation.
Secondly, I think, Mr President, that your company has carefully considered the character of the companies that I represent. They are free industrial enterprises, which operate with economic means and purposes, with the methods of free competition and for which must answer to their good management to shareholders, the law, and public opinion.
True it is: indirect, but not exclusive, the shareholder of our companies is the State. But therefore they do not take on a public character, nor does this make them manifestations of that statism which in no democratic country we would like to see erected, in imitation of the communist countries.
The state requires nothing from us except to receive dividends; nothing can ask us except to operate for economic purposes and in compliance with the laws.
[...] The State, by entrusting the oil activities of its competence to the Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi, [...] hopes to prevent and develop private monopolies capable of dominating the market and to derive financial benefits from oppressive actions towards the consumer. [...]
Finally, I see in the agreement also reached an act of trust towards me. And for that I particularly thank you, Mr President.
We want to create a large company in Italy for the production of nitrogen fertilizers and synthetic rubber. We ask providence that our efforts are crowned with success and we consider today's act as a sure wish, which binds us to the production processes of the great American company which, Mr. President, you worthily represent.



ECONOMIC AND INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT FORECASTS FOR THE COUNTRY

La Discussione, June 16, 1955, interview


What do you think, Mr Mattei, are the prospects for Italy's economic development for the next few years?
I have no hesitation in declaring that I am quite optimistic.
I am deeply convinced that the discoveries of methane and oil, which have followed one another in an increasingly fast pace over the last decade, will not only help to improve the balance of payments and increase productivity per capita, but will help us overcome the inferiority complex crippling for which, for decades now, we were accustomed to considering Italy as a country hopelessly poor in energy sources and raw materials and therefore hopelessly condemned to remain on the margins of modern civilization.



THE STATE AND OIL IN ITALY

Oggi, 13 October 1955, article signed by Enrico Mattei


I have always considered it advantageous, even in industrial work, to always tell the truth. It is an old and honest method, but one that always proves useful in a world of astute like ours. [...] Probably without the goad of hostilities and without the anxious expectation, benevolent this, of public opinion, the mighty oil body of the State, which includes four large parent companies, AGIP, AGIP Mineraria, Società Nazionale Metanodotti, Azienda Nazionale Idrogenazione Combustibile and thirty-five subsidiaries, would hardly have arisen in such a short time, all under the control and direction of the Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi.
However, the most flattering incitements were not lacking. And in this regard, the dear figure of Alcide De Gasperi comes to mind first [...]. And immediately afterwards the name of Ezio Vanoni emerges [...].
In the two-year period 1945-1946, the average annual production of methane was 12 million m3, that is, just the quantity that was consumed daily in the winter of 1954-1955.
The journey has been long and hard. [...]
All this is the result of an impressive mobilization of technical and human means. [...]
Methane was a disappointment in 1945: it posed colossal problems because to use it, its delivery to the consumer's home was necessary.
Those who consider today the network of natural gas pipelines of northern Italy, which SNAM has laid for almost 4000 km using 180,000 t of steel, a network with 42 cm diameter pipes crosses mountains and rivers reaching Milan, Turin, Genoa, Venice and Bologna, to then branch out to the factories, and is capable of transporting 20 million m3 per day, hard to believe that it was born in the short space of seven years. [...]
If the mining technicians were insufficient, the specialists for the transport of methane, from the designers and topographers to the welders of the pipes, were completely missing at the beginning of the construction of the network. To prepare for the new tasks of the over two thousand units that make up SNAM's current cadres and workers, special schools and training centres had to be set up. But the harmonious development of an oil complex involves, in addition to the branches of production and transport, also transformations activities and distribution to consumption. Within the ENI, these tasks were mainly carried out by the companies AGIP, ANIC, and their subsidiaries. They include five refineries, some of which operate jointly with other economic entities, which cover
about a third of the entire national refining capacity. In the field of transformations, [...] a large petrochemical plant, now under construction in Ravenna, is being added on the initiative of ANIC. [...]
The commercial organization of AGIP is, among ENI's activities, the most conspicuous one towards the public. Our road signs, with advertising references, of fabulous animals, which have had so much success with fame also abroad, constitute the first contact of consumers with AGIP fuels and lubricants and with its liquefied gases for domestic use. But the driver recognizes above all the harmonious and modern architectural lines of the service and refueling stations, in which the brilliant colours of the Supercortemaggiore pumps stand out and appreciates the care of the staff and above all the quality of the products. Among the other companies controlled by ENI, I remember only the Nuovo Pignone in Florence, which was aimed, among others, at the construction of drilling probes and other oil equipment, thus allowing the country of currency economies for many millions of dollars per year. [...]




THE NUOVO PIGNONE IN THE ENI GROUP AND THE IDECO – PIGNONE OIL PROBE

Florence 9 March 1957



[...] This first probe built by the Pignone truly represents a symbol of what we have done since the moment the Nuovo Pignone became part of the Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi group.
I myself, if I turn with thought to those days, I cannot remain not pleasantly impressed by the profound difference between my impressions of that time and today. When I first came here, I felt gripped by a sense of desolation. On the spirits and things weighed the bleak atmosphere of the ruin that threatened a large company, and like you, workers of the Nuovo Pignone, felt the weight of the concern of the bread and of the future for you and your families, so I felt the responsibility of the commitment that I assumed to create with you a valid production and wellness tool with a function in the group and in the country.
But we quickly got out of this atmosphere. We dealt with the problems of the company with clarity of ideas and programs, with firmness of purpose, with a new hope that arose from the same depth of the crisis suffered.
I would say that this crisis was one of the favourable elements of our collaboration. We started together, management and workers, starting almost from scratch, without having a past of disappointments and frictions behind us but rather having in front of us that new hope of recovery and progress. [...]
This means laying the foundations for a type of internal factory work relationship between management and workers, inspired by the right criteria of human solidarity and conscious collaboration with production problems. [...] On this basis and with this new spirit, we have been able, for almost a year, to reach consultation agreements between management and employees representation regarding the review of the methods of remuneration of wage earner personnel, the criteria for classifying tasks, working times, internal mobility of workers from department to department depending on the progress of production.
A few weeks ago the conclusion of the definitive agreement on the productivity bonus which constitutes the most tangible expression of our common effort, of which it is good that we remember the story on this occasion.
A technical and financial plan was prepared, drawn up with the collaboration of the group companies, which allowed for adequate investments in equipment and machinery suitable for the
new production development and which enabled the Nuovo Pignone to compete not only with the mechanical companies on the Italian market, but also on the international one. The workers were qualified and proportionate to the new production program; the entire company organization was revised to increase the efficiency of the industrial and commercial apparatus [...].
The future of Italian oil is also linked to the degree of specialization of the employees of our company; it is linked to the results of your already perfected work, to these gigantic products, to these probes that will further increase our research possibilities and therefore the probability of finding new oil and new methane.
All this means that we do not work only for ourselves, that we do not try to satisfy only our material needs. There is a broader purpose, and a higher satisfaction, to the efforts of the workers, the employees, the technicians, the managers, to whom I still want to express my praise and thanks today [...] there is willingness and awareness to contribute to the creation of a freer and more prosperous future for all the Italian people, to affirm the name of Italy and the ability of its workers abroad.
Today we also inaugurate the canteen. It is a modern canteen and is the best in our group because it is the last one that was made. We delivered the apartments of the four buildings built this morning: forty-eight apartments. But every year we will make a group of them. My ambition is to give everyone a home and we will work together for this too.
These provisions should not be considered as acts of generosity of the company towards you but as a result due only to the prosperity of the factory, through your tenacious, intelligent and disciplined work.
Efforts must persist. A proverb that has been passed on to us by the Romans says that everyone is the maker of their own luck.
It is an eternal truth which, however, in the modern world must be integrated because the large industrial company becomes the instrument of employee well-being only through their collaboration. Putting efforts together, overcoming any disagreements, waiting with attachment to one's work also means ensuring the perfection of products, satisfying customers, stabilizing employment and making calm the future.



ENI AND THE ITALIAN ENERGY PROBLEM

Piacenza, 12 September 1957. International technical-economic conference on hydrocarbons


The organization that has been built almost out of nothing in the past twelve years offers guarantees to build a solid foundation for the activities undertaken. The progress made so far has allowed it to make a valid contribution to the development of national income without weighing on State finances, indeed, with the profit of the Treasury, to which ENI paid 65% of its profits in 1956, for about 3 billion of Italian lira. ENI today has technical means, men, credit; despite opposition and bitter controversy, it has the necessary prestige.
In its own structure of a large articulated and integrated industrial complex, it provides at the same time the opportunity and the tool to coordinate these activities, carried out in the most diverse fields, in an energy policy that ensures the economic progress of our country. [...]



THE PROBLEMS AND PERSPECTIVES OF THE OIL INDUSTRY FOR WESTERN EUROPE

Paris, 22 November 1957, conference organized by the Center d’ètudes de politique ètrangère and the Committee for the study of Franco-Italian problems


[...] In the fifty-fifty system, half, and more, of the profits made with the production of crude oil goes into the availability of the state budget of the producing Country and is paid to the oil industry, to which the entire burden remains funding new research. In a capital market which is subjected to strong pressure almost everywhere, the raising of funds is a problem and a burden which all the more aggravated the more the distribution of profits goes away, in favour of governments, from the classic 50-50. [...]
In the new system, instead, the association between a foreign company and a company in the producing Country creates the mechanism for the latter to participate in the financing of the industry through capital injections and the reinvestment of profits. [...]
However, it seems to me that the pre-eminent interest of the new formula is in its political meaning. Oil is a 'political' resource par excellence, since the times when its importance was more strategic than economic. It is now a question of putting it at the service of a good politics, as much as possible without imperialistic and colonialist reminiscences, aimed at maintaining peace, at the well-being of those who possess that resource as a gift of nature and those who use it by force of their industry. The elevation of the producing Countries to the rank of associates of cultivation companies seems to me a step on the path of that politics. I have already said that other countries appear desirable and are indeed desired. Allow me to remember it here, in a particularly delicate moment of international life full of uncertainties and anxieties. If from this situation the call for solidarity and intensification of the common efforts of the western world emerges stronger, it is clear that in this spirit the complex problems posed by one of the key resources for the life and security of our peoples must also be addressed.



BATTLES FOR OIL

Rome, February 5, 1958, television interview


[...] ENI is a financial institution, [...] established in 1953 to collect and administer all the State's shareholdings in companies that deal directly or indirectly with hydrocarbons, mineral or industrial products from the large family of oils.
The oil or similar companies controlled by ENI are around fifty with a share capital of many tens of billions and a total activity of several hundreds of billions. These fifty companies are grouped into five major companies, which are the five fingers of ENI: Azienda Generale Italiana Petroli, the AGIP Mineraria, the Società Nazionale Metanodotti, the Azienda Nazionale Idrogenazione Combustibili and the AGIP Nucleare.
[...] and after I saw the means that are used in the Arab countries and in the Middle East, I realized that we also have those means, that we too have men, and that that is a job that we can do us well too.
They must stop telling us that we are not capable and that we do not have the means. The same was done in Egypt too. We were building an oil pipeline: we were told that we would never do it, that we would never be able to complete it, that the poor Egyptians had misused their money and their trust. And when we finished we had big awards, because it was the best we could do.
The same insidious weapon, I would say unfair, was used in Sinai, when we started the search for oil. Even there we would never have arrived. Poor taxpayer money! We have discovered immense deposits, which belong to Italy, because we have a large participation, and which bring wealth to Egypt, but also to our country. We did not ask anyone for a penny.
The same pitfall was not spared in Persia, and while we were making the contract: everyone got to read it through the press. As usual, the Italians had neither the means nor the ability. We must be careful to use our money, they advised us for our good.
They did not recommend it for our sake. They protected their interests, because we started competition in one of the richest oil areas in the world; and we thank the Persians for the trust they have shown us, and we, for our part, will demonstrate how quickly we will carry on our research.
It was logical that even in Libya they used the same method. In the foreign press it appeared that in Libya they did not give us the concession, because we did not have the means, the experience, the skills.
Now there is nothing more unfair: we have the means of others, the skills of others and there could also be room for us in the Mediterranean, with the needs we have and with the possibilities that obviously we could have made available for the work in Libya. But there has been denied. And I am very sorry about this. However, as long as we find ourselves in conflict with foreign interests I can understand the struggle, because we try to enter, to penetrate, to make our interest of Italians who want, for our Country, sources of energy necessary for our development.
But many times I do not understand the Italians who ally themselves with these big international oil interests against us, forgetting that we, abroad, are Italy, we are not just ENI. We are the Italian flag, we work for our Country and for the needs and tomorrow of our Country. And this is the most unpleasant part of our effort.



DUALISM BETWEEN CAPITALISM AND SOCIALISM: PRIVATE AND STATE CAPITALISM IN ITALY

Beijing-Moscow (?), 9 December 1958


[...] In Italy in particular we are witnessing this double phenomenon. First of all, there is a progressive release of the private economy from the management of the individual capitalist, due to the concentration and integration of businesses; the transfer of management into the hands of senior officials; and finally in the growing participation of small, fractional and anonymous share capital in industrial companies.
It is a collective capitalism, I will say so, that sometimes operates in conditions of oligopoly and often does not disdain state interventions, indeed sometimes even urges them. It contributes with its attitudes to determine the replacement of spontaneous regulatory mechanisms theorized by liberal economists with different and sometimes better voluntary regulators. Think, in this regard, of the functions of differential duties, of production and export premiums; free creation by the State of all economic infrastructure; the changes in the balance of consumption caused by the control of prices, the blocking of certain contracts, moratoriums and the like.
Alongside this private capitalism, already very different from the classical schemes, a State capitalism is imperiously established in Italy today by the force of things. These are mostly operating companies created by the State and assigned to be managed by entities defined under public law. Two state bodies in particular assume the greatest importance in Italy: IRI [...] and ENI [...].
In consideration of this, with ENI we represent the advanced tip of a movement, which proposes as a purpose of economic activity rather the public good than profit and assumes, as the case may be, a substitute or integrating function of the private initiative.



REALITY AND HOPES OF THE PETROCHEMICAL INDUSTRY

Camerino, University of Camerino, 27 April 1960, honoris causa degree ceremony in Chemistry


[...] is for me a reason for particular emotion and pride. It is a solemn act of the most illustrious university of the same region in which I was born and in which my parents rest in the sleep of the just; in a certain sense it is my ideal university, which, perched on this hill full of history, appeared to me as a young boy, from nearby Matelica, my homeland of choice, as a shining summit of culture and promises.
Then my active life took over in its vortex, and events passed before me quickly and absorbently. Today I can say that I found, for a short day, the serenity and quiet of my youth, in my land and among my industrious and wise people.
Here has called me a scientists’ meeting not guided by passion, ambition, profit; who judges man's facts objectively as those of nature; that does not allow himself to be misled by the appearances or influences of others; and takes his determinations with the same detachment with which he formulates the results of his studies.
For all these considerations, I express to you, magnificent rector, to you, master of the Faculty of Sciences and to all of them, illustrious professors, my deep gratitude for the degree that is conferred on me today.
[...] the 1953 law assigned ENI, together with the task of producing hydrocarbons, that of their processing and transformation. [...] in this way the public body, given the large size of the production units of the modern petrochemical industry, would have prevented the concentration of companies in this sector in a small number of private companies, thus eliminating the danger of the formation of agreements limiting competition to the detriment of the consumer.
The aims to be achieved were in a certain sense favored by the discovery in Ravenna of an important methane field which, in order to be used for normal consumption, would have had to be transported to the large industries of Lombardy. [...]
The general scheme of the Ravenna plant, as it was designed and built, includes a methane piroscission plant to obtain acetylene and hydrogen. Acetylene becomes the starting compound for the production of rubber and other plastic materials; hydrogen, in turn, together with nitrogen obtained from the air, supplies ammonia from which the entire range of nitrogen fertilizers is obtained.
Other production processes are grafted onto the main trunk and, in particular, that of butadiene obtained from liquid gases and that of complex fertilizers, which technically and economically integrate the functionality and efficiency of the whole complex. [...]
A similar story has now occurred in Gela, Sicily. At the end of 1956, a vast oil field of high density and with high sulfur content was discovered in that area. [...]
ON THE DECOLONIZATION OF STATES AND THE ECONOMY
Tunis, 9-20 June 1960
I am here to answer your investment call and to help you in the fight against underdevelopment.
I am not afraid of the Algerian war.
I am not afraid of decolonization.
I believe in decolonization not only for moral reasons of human dignity, but for economic reasons of productivity.
Without decolonization it is not possible to arouse the energies, the enthusiasm necessary for the enhancement of Africa and Asia in the Afro-Asiatic peoples. [...]
A colonial condition exists when the play of supply and demand for a vital raw material is altered by a hegemonic power: even private, of monopoly and oligopoly.
In the oil sector this hegemonic-oligopolistic power is the cartel.
I fight against the cartel not only because it is oligopolistic, but because it is Malthusian, and Malthusian against producer Countries as well as against consumer Countries.
The cartel is Anglo-Saxon, but I am not against the Anglo-Saxon world. American independents are my friends and have a lot of weight in America and they will have even more if there is a new administration in America in November. [...]
By associating with you, I take into account that you have the interest of a consumer Country today but tomorrow (inshallah) of a producer Country. [...]
I want to create something more than a refinery: I want to create an economic development centre in the Tunisian south.
[...] and I offer you above all equality, co-management, the formation of a technological elite so that you are not the passive receiver of a foreign initiative, but you are a subject, not an object, of economy.
I will have criticisms in Italy (why not a refinery in Sicily?) and you will be under Anglo-American pressure. Do not let that scare you. I was not scared; Morocco was not scared. Do not frighten yourself either.



CEREMONY FOR THE LAYING OF FOUNDATION STONE OF THE REFINERY

Mohammedia, 25 June 1960


[...] but in today's ceremony, rather than the strictly economic aspect of an industrial initiative, the novelty and value of the formula I have already mentioned should be emphasized. In fact, far from having granted ENI a concession that it will be able to exploit at its will, even if in the common interest, with the establishment of a Moroccan company an active cooperation has been established, which has put side by side on a level of absolute equality and mutual respect for the managers, technicians and workers of the two countries concerned.





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