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 of 2018, has already been appointed new general director of the School of Industrial Organization (EOI). It 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 director of the Ministry's cabinet. The appointment assures him at least one year with this salary improvement depending on the outcome of the next general election.
In the statement, Maroto is full of praise for the figure of Díaz Bidart. "He 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 it has been able to generate confidence among all actors to seek 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 technicians of the Ministry, achieved an improvement in conditions and the channeling of extra aid through the autonomous communities.
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) that represent the largest investment in history in our country, "adds the statement.
Díaz Bidart has a degree in Economics and was, among other positions in the private and public sphere, concejar for twelve years in Torrelodones where he befriended the minister. Maroto and Díaz Bidart have formed a strong tandem and made a common front in the Ministry against other high officials whom they considered wayward. The outcome last December was the dismissal of the Secretary of State for Tourism, Fernando Valdés, and the Secretary General of 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 did not get the green light from Moncloa.
Finally, he assigned 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 his recent repechage as president of Renfe. For Díaz Bidart it is a salary improvement and Maroto's last attempt to offer a way out to his loyal friend before leaving the Ministry after also failing other options in public companies.
According to the statement, "his qualities in the political, professional and academic fields make Diaz Bidart an excellent candidate to serve as general director of the EOI."
According to The Trust Project criteria
- Reyes Maroto