The post-World War II decades were marked by a further expansion of the area of state-owned enterprises, with the setting-up of two other state-owned holdings, ENI (1953) and EFIM
(1962), in addition to IRI.
Also, the Audit Court, in April, warned about the risks due to debts of public enterprises which benefit from a Treasury guarantee on principal and interest payments; Law 598/94, in addition to the liquidation of EFIM
debts, has resulted in the emergence of L 13 trillion of debt of IRI, L 10 trillion of which is covered by Treasury guarantee.
The two major public holdings, IRI and ENI, as well as the agency under liquidation, EFIM, are huge conglomerates controlling hundreds of firms employing over half a million people in 1991 or 3.
In July 1992, the Amato Government liquidated EFIM, the third largest public conglomerate, and announced a far-reaching privatisation plan which broke with the piecemeal approach of the past.
54) Liquidation of EFIM had become inevitable given the ballooning stock of outstanding financial debt and the persistently huge losses incurred by the conglomerate, which by 1992 had completely wiped out its own capital.
57) This entrusted their single shareholder, the Treasury, and their managers with the same responsibilities and obligations faced by the owner of a private firm: for instance, civil code provisions would probably have forced the Government to liquidate EFIM much earlier.
procedures for the sale of Nuovo Pignone (ENI) and a number of smaller subsidiaries of IRI, ENI and EFIM had reached an advanced stage;
Over the past five years, full privatisation was essentially limited to Alfa Romeo (sold by IRI in 1986); Lanerossi textiles (sold by ENI in 1987); Sopal food processing (sold by EFIM in 1990); and the sale of the diesel engine subsidiary by IRI, and SIR fine chemicals (sold by comitato SIR in 1987) and a few small banks.
70) For example, EFIM controls BREDA, a company, which produces railway rolling stock and busses.
The first major transactions included the purchase by ENI (Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi, created in 1953) of a large number of clothing and textile firms from the mid-1960s onward; the absorption of the Motta, Alemagma, Cirio and Star food concerns from 1968 to 1972 by SME owned by IRI (Istituto per la Ricostruzione Industriale, created in the 1930s) and the purchase of the Montedison aluminium business by EFIM (Ente Participazioni e Finanziamento Industria Manufatturiera, created in 1962).
Predieri concluded, "On behalf of EFIM
, Alumix, its employees and the citizens of Italy who are turning a highly respected public industrial institution into a private enterprise, we welcome Alcoa and its acknowledged leadership in the world aluminum industry to our country.