By Linda Hall • 08 March 2023 • 12:14
NADIA CALVIÑO: Economy Minister looking for ways to halt Ferrovial’s exit
Photo credit: Moncloa Pool
Ministers believe it could be possible to use anti-takeover regulations to halt the planned merger between the Madrid-based parent company and Ferrovial International, its Dutch subsidiary.
This law was introduced in early 2020 to protect foreign companies from snapping up strategic Spanish businesses as shares plummeted owing to Covid lockdowns and restrictions.
Extended last December, the legislation will be in force until the end of 2024 and legal experts are currently analysing whether activating it would require explicit Cabinet authorisation.
Nadia Calviño, vice-president and Minister for Economic Affairs, pointed out on hearing Ferrovial’s announcement that the highly profitable construction and services company had founded its fortune on public sector infrastructure contracts. During Pedro Sanchez’s time as president alone, Ferrovial was awarded €1 billion in contracts.
Calviño stressed that Ferrovial could not be “punished” via contracts but inside the construction sector the feeling was growing that the company was unlikely to be a good ally in coming months.
This was the opinion of the director general of a company listed on Spain Ibex-35. Many of the infrastructure giants would think twice before joining Ferrovial on big contracts, he said. Another agreed that at present, Ferrovial would not be the “best of companions” on short-term joint ventures (UTEs).
Meanwhile, with less than 20 per cent of its income Spain-based, the company is looking across the Atlantic, with 92 per cent of its investment between now and 2027 committed to the US.
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Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share?
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