The outgoing Minister of Industry, Reyes Maroto, has managed to place and shield her cabinet director on the eve of her departure from the Government. According to an official statement, Juan Ignacio Díaz Bidart, Maroto’s right-hand man in 2018, has already been appointed as the new general director of the School of Industrial Organization (EOI). This is a public position dependent on the Ministry of Industry paid with 120,000 euros per year, 20,000 more than the current remuneration of Díaz Bidart as cabinet director of the Ministry. The appointment ensures him at least one year with this salary improvement depending on the result of the next general elections.

In the statement, Maroto praises the figure of Díaz Bidart. “It has played an essential role in coordinating the three departments of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism in complex moments such as those derived from the pandemic and now the war in Ukraine to give an adequate response that has saved many jobs and companies” . And not only that, “it has also been essential for the resolution of different industrial crises in which he has managed to generate trust among all the actors to find a satisfactory solution for all parties.” One of them was the crisis with Seat, which was about to abort its battery plant in Spain and Díaz Bidart, against the criteria of Ministry technicians, managed to improve conditions and channel extra aid through the communities. autonomous.

“It has also been essential for the implementation of the new instruments of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan financed with Next Generation funds such as the PERTEs (Strategic Projects for Economic Recovery and Transformation) which represent the largest investment in history in our country,” the statement added.

Díaz Bidart has a degree in Economics and was, among other positions in the private and public sphere, a councilor for twelve years in Torrelodones where he became friends with the minister. Maroto and Díaz Bidart have formed a strong tandem and made a common front in the Ministry against other senior officials whom they considered wayward. The outcome last December was the dismissal of the Secretary of State for Tourism, Fernando Valdés, and the General Secretary for Industry, Raül Blanco. Maroto also tried to dismiss the Secretary of State for Commerce, Xiana Méndez, to replace her with Díaz Bidart himself and ensure her a position on the Commission of Undersecretaries after her departure, but she did not get the green light from Moncloa.

Finally, he assigns him the general direction of the EOI where he had previously sent Raül Blanco. For him it was a degradation, since he was general secretary, but he accepted the position until the recent play-off of him as president of Renfe. For Díaz Bidart it is a salary increase and Maroto’s last attempt to offer his loyal friend a way out before leaving the Ministry after also failing other options in public companies.

According to the statement, “his qualities both in the political, professional and academic fields make Diaz Bidart an excellent candidate for the general direction of the EOI.”

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