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Piller, Tobias

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4 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Germany | 21/09/2011

Italians need alarm signals

The downgrading of Italy's credit rating could force through the financial restructuring the country urgently needs but is incapable of achieving on its own, the conservative daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung writes: "The public administration is unproductive, the distribution of competences among the various institutions is chaotic, the unions insist on old privileges, and the labour law induces small businesses to refrain from hiring more than 15 employees. Bank of Italy governor Draghi has made it clear to the judiciary that greater efficiency on their part could boost growth by one percent per year. ... Berlusconi lacks credibility and the biggest opposition party continues to shift to the left, away from austerity and reform programmes. And for its part the Centre offers nothing but rhetoric devoid of content. No politician wants to admit that it is the country's precarious situation that has allowed the crisis of small peripheral states to morph into a crisis of confidence in all of Europe. The only thing that can help is warning and alarm signals. Without pressure from outside Italy will not make any progress."

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Germany | 08/04/2009

Politicians failed to take action

After the earthquake in Italy's Abruzzo region the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung calls the country's politicians to account: "Many houses were built without permission or illegal extensions were added to them. The governments that granted amnesties for these offences, including those of Silvio Berlusconi in the years 1994 and 2001, were particularly popular. But because of these amnesties the technical features of these houses were never checked. All the constructors had to do was transfer the appropriate fees to the tax authorities. … The minister for transport and infrastructure has now announced that the damage to public buildings caused by the earthquake in L'Aquila amounts to over 1.3 billion euros. Italy's most prominent disaster control expert Guido Bertolaso has been saying for years that in the long term it's cheaper to take measures to prevent disasters than to have to repair the damage every time one occurs. However so far he has not been able to convince either Italy or its politicians to take action."

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Germany | 04/06/2008

The failure of the FAO

The German daily comments on the Food and Agriculture Organisation's lack of a coordinated strategy: "Jacques Diouf, Director-General of the FAO, has begun to reduce the message of 'his' food summit to the standard rhetoric: he warns of the growing threat hunger poses for the world and calls for more money for developing countries. However this message lacks not only a constructive perspective but also plausibility. ... As a result, the excellent expertise of FAO experts stands in contrast to the failure of its political leadership. ... No wonder the FAO has failed to heighten its profile even though the organisation possesses the ability to see the big picture. ... The best contribution Jacques Diouf could therefore make to providing food for the world would be for him to make way so the FAO can make a fresh start."

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Germany | 09/01/2008

Naples' trash problem symbolizes Italy's crisis

Tobias Piller describes how Naples' trash crisis developed over several years, so that increasing numbers of Neapolitans have turned the emergency into a career. "But the real geniuses were regional president Antonio Bassolino and his predecessor, Andrea Losco, who designed a trash separation system for Naples and the surrounding area: In 2000, about 2,400 garbagemen were hired to collect sorted waste, and 65 million euros were spent on machines and lorries - without any official application process, and cheered on by those in power. The lorries have disappeared. The garbage collectors openly admit that though they have been paid since 2000, they have not gathered a single kilo of trash. ... So the crisis may be a boon to those pulling the strings: If the problem supposedly must be dealt with quickly, it becomes much easier for them to eschew a transparent application process in favour of business associates and political cronies."

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