Nazionalizzazioni, privatizzazioni e concorrenza: materia per una Costituzione?
| RIVISTA INTERNAZIONALE DI SCIENZE SOCIALI - 2006 - 1-2
The Italian constitution does not mention competition. A statement in favour of an economy
based on free markets could be introduced, but the European Treaties provide a sufficient integration.
The Italian constitution considers the public enterprise as the remedy to excessive market
power and the instrument to achieve social goals. The reasons in favour of public enterprise are
much weaker today than they were when the Constitution was written in 1947: global markets
and antitrust policy provide competition, capital is available for investment, regulation helps in reconciling
private enterprise with services of general interest. The main de facto arguments for
public enterprise are (a) the need to provide appropriate shareholders to essential facilities, (b) inertia
(since public enterprises exist, the burden of proof lies on the side of privatisation) and (c)
the debated link between national ownership and the national interest.