The Ministers of the Treasury, Ruth Merino; Environment, Salomé Pradas; and Industry, Nuria Montes, as well as the president of the Castellón Provincial Council, Marta Barrachina, met yesterday with the management of Ascer, the Spanish Association that manufactures ceramic tiles and flooring, in Castelló de la Plana. The meeting comes after the celebration of the Italian Cersaie fair, where there was an important representation of tile companies from the Valencian Community and where president Carlos Mazón announced new direct aid to the sector.
At the meeting, the Minister of Finance, Economy and Public Administration, Ruth Merino, informed the employers’ association of the current status of the subsidized financing lines of the Valencian Institute of Finance (IVF) that are specifically aimed at supporting the ceramic sector. In total, through the four lines of financing enabled by the IVF, 21 operations have already been approved for a combined amount of 26 million euros.
In this regard, in addition to the ten operations approved during the last month, since last September 13, the president of the IVF, Enrique Montes, announced to those responsible for Ascer that there are currently ten other operations, which he has committed to expedite to respond “within reasonable deadlines.”
“We said it, we have set about it and we have done it,” said the head of the Treasury after recalling the commitment made by the president of the Generalitat, Carlos Mazón, to improve the financing conditions for the ceramic sector with an increase of ten points. in the subsidized section of the two specific lines of credit of the IVF. Montes highlighted that this increase in the Non-Refundable Tranche (TNR) represents a “substantial improvement” in financing conditions. As an example, he explained that direct aid – in the case of one of the recently approved operations – worth 5 million euros rises to 500,000 euros.
“Either temporary direct aid is coming or it is going to be very difficult to get out of this situation.”
“Today is the beginning of something, the will on both sides is to continue working both at strategic tables and at operational tables, because it is where we go down to each of the problems to find a solution,” said the president of Ascer, Vicente Nomdedeu. . However, the businessman recalled that many of the decisions that affect the sector depend on Brussels or Madrid, which is why he recalled that “either temporary direct aid is coming or it is going to be very difficult to get out of this situation,” he added.
The president of the IVF commits to streamlining operations to respond to the sector “within reasonable deadlines”
For her part, the Minister of the Environment, Salomé Pradas, announced improvements in the connections of Onda, Alcora and Vila-real with Castellón, since the objective of the Ministry, she said, “is to facilitate the connectivity of the ceramic industry with the rest of the productive sectors through the major road axes of the Mediterranean Corridor, the future intermodal station and the Port of Castellón. “We want PortCastelló to be the reference port and the natural outlet for large merchandise for the ceramic sector, not only for raw materials, but also for the delivery of finished products,” she indicated.
Likewise, the person responsible for the Environment announced that “the procedure for Integrated Environmental Authorizations will be streamlined, on which many investments in strategic sectors of the province depend.”
Likewise, at the meeting, Councilor Nuria Montes highlighted the Valencian Government’s willingness to give new impetus to Cevisama. “It has to respond to the specific demands of the current economic moment,” said the counselor. Montes expressed her intention to reactivate the organizing committee of the contest so that, with the support of the Valencia City Council, the strategic lines to be followed in the next editions can be established.
This edition of Cevisama, which will take place from February 26 to March 1 at Feria Valencia, is number 40 and, according to the organization, already has good occupancy prospects, as it has already managed to reach 80% occupancy of its space. “The response that the industry is giving to the celebration of Cevisama’s 40th anniversary is exceptional,” said Carmen Álvarez, director of the event this week.
“The data reflects the great interest in participating in Cevisama, both in the more traditional exhibition space and in the new formats that we present,” adds Álvarez, referring to The New Architectonics space, dedicated to industrialized construction. Brands such as Vives, Ape Grupo, Keraben, Aparici, Peronda, Roca Cerámica, Realonda, Visobath or Fila will be in this edition.
Negotiation of the collective agreement
The tile sector is negotiating the collective agreement these days. In its most recent assessment, the employers’ association points out that the sector’s situation “continues to deteriorate in all its indicators” and especially highlights production, with a decrease of -19.8% in the last 12 months, a reduction in export sales in the period January-July 23 of -17.7% in value and -26.4% in volume and an employment destruction of 1,681 jobs since July of last year.