Riqueza Consciente – ¿Por qué el norte de Italia es más rico que el sur de Italia?.
Sacado de Wikipedia:
Per capita GDP
Figures are in euros at market exchange rates and not at purchasing power parity (PPP).
|Rank||Region||2017||% of National average|
Las provincias del norte son más ricas que las provincias del sur.
Abajo se ve el producto interno bruto por persona de las ciudades más ricas.
(in mil. of Euro)
(mil. of US$ PPP)
|2015 GDP per
capita (in Euro)
|2015 GDP per
capita (in US$ PPP)
|Metropolitan City of Milan||Lombardy||162,652||219,003||50,786||68,381|
|South Tyrol||Trentino-Alto Adige||21,603||29,087||41,568||55,970|
|Metropolitan City of Bologna||Emilia-Romagna||25,296||52,668||38,918||52,402|
|Metropolitan City of Florence||Tuscany||36,097||48,603||35,642||47,990|
|Metropolitan City of Rome||Lazio||150,315||202,392||34,625||46,621|
|Aosta Valley||Aosta Valley||4,404||5,930||34,457||46,395|
|Metropolitan City of Genoa||Liguria||28,753||38,715||33,506||45,114|
Todo sacado de Quora:
Why is southern Italy poorer than northern Italy?
And, by the way, I often hear, expecially from southern Italians, that the kingdom of the two Sicilies was richer than any other state in Italy when it was annected. It’s true, its kings and aristocracy were richer than anyone else in Italy (if you don’t consider the pope, of course), but its people weren’t; on the contrary, they were poorer than the average northern Italians. There was very little middle class, few enterprises, the country was already underdeveloped. Then things worsened, I’m not trying to deny that: the new governance failed to resolve the ‘southern question’ and yes, the new governance was largely northern, but this just proves what I wrote above: electoral laws were the same in the whole of Italy, you had do be able to pay a tax and to read and write in order to vote. The fact that most pm were from the north just underlines that there people were richer.
2. all the other things you talked about are just reflections of what I wrote before. Southern culture didn’t prevent its people from being wealthy for many centuries, so there’s no reason to believe it does now. Mafia… it’s a long story and I don’t feel I’m informed enough to speak about that.
This is a very complex question that has puzzled historians, politicians and economists for decades now.
As others have said, Sicily was once among the wealthiest regions in Italy until 200 years ago. Equally, Naples was considered a world capital until 19th Century, together with Rome and Paris.
There is a constellation of reasons why the South of Italy has lost its advantage compared to the Northern part of the Country and it is now among the less developed areas in Europe, no matter how many billions of Euro the Central Government and the European Union pump every year in the attempt to revive the South of Italy’s economy.
1. Times have changed and culturally Southern Italians have been unable to adapt: the southern part of Italy was an agriculture-based Economy for centuries. In the last 150 years agriculture has lost its dominance over the Economy: first in favour of the Mechanical Industries (the Industrial Revolution sparkled by the Brits), secondly in favour of the Services Industries. Southern Italy missed completely both of these economic revolutions.
These huge missed opportunities had three main consequences that you can still notice today:
- Structural lack of social mobility: children end up doing the same jobs of their parents. This is (unfortunately) a common trait of all Italians (North and South alike), but according to the statistics it is particularly exacerbated in the South of Italy (and they love it like this). Given this premise, it is extremely difficult for a lower-middle class Southern Italian to climb the social ladder. This is not an accidental by-product of the social contract in force: through a thousands of written and unwritten rules, the system achieved this by design. The . In the long term, this destroyed the South of Italy middle class, leaving an ever increasing divide between the ultra-rich, watertight, rent-seeking upper/ruling classes and the vast majority of the lower classes.
- Few risk takers: there is a very low entrepreneurial attitude among Southern Italians (especially the middle class): most of «the best and the brightest» (and there are many, very smart, hard-working and able) end up in the Government bureaucratic machine not unlike what happens in Japan. Not unlike Japan, this is done by design. This (and this only) is considered — work-wise — a “success” in the South of Italy, with the result that thousands and thousands of smart, young and very able Southern Italians of every possible root apply every year for any available vacancy within the bureaucratic machine (including magistrates, state administrative jobs, notaries, law clerks, etc.). Jobs are simply “requested” by the base as a sort of “welfare” and award for the smart, hard-working & able, and not the natural by-product of a healthy local economy. Nowhere is taught to the younger generations that entrepreneurship is a valid option for the smart and able;
- No highly specialised service economy: as mentioned above, the service economy in the South of Italy has translated into bureaucratic jobs manufactured by the Italian central government for the sole purpose of giving jobs to the people in the (lame) attempt to revive the local economy. As a consequence, this has created enormous State-owned conglomerates with zero public usefulness and has instated an iron-clad mentality into people that the safest / best jobs anyone could find are those with the State (i.e. you cannot be fired and once you get the job, you are set for life, you will get a mortgage, you can get sick for years and never get fired, etc.). The Central Government originally fuelled this attitude by hiring more than 180k people from South of Italy in their internal bureaucracy just in the few years after the WWII. Historically, there was a huge inflow of Southern Italians all over the bureaucratic machine at all levels and, in a critical time of reconstruction of the Country, this destroyed the need for Southern Italians (or at least their active, educated middle class) to approach the real market and create jobs that were actually needed and not «manufactured» for political purposes. To date, it is estimated that in the South of Italy, 1/3 of the active population is unemployed, 1/3 works in private companies and 1/3 works for the State or State-owned companies. This means that half of the working population works for the State (with higher than average salaries and future-proof job protections, compounded by ridiculously low level of productivity). Things are slightly improving now, but in the meantime the generation of our parents was lost forever.
2. Brain drain: for generations, the extreme poverty and structural lack of social mobility forced millions of bright, risk-taker, Southern Italians to leave the Country, in most cases in favour of Southern and Northern America. This prevented a cultural change at home, because the incumbent, upper-class, people with the «old» mindset had firmly the reins of the political, administrative, legal, judicial and, most importantly, financial machine for generations and no change of mindset was conceivable to come from the system’s insiders (who traditionally have been silently (but immensely) profiting from the status quo for generations). In recent years, the emigration abroad was reduced thanks to substantial subsidies by the central government, while it increased the internal migration from southern regions to the north of the Country (in 2015 alone, 138k Southern Italians under 30 years old moved to the Northern part of the Country in the attempt to find a job).
3. Organised Crime: in the last 150 years a small part of Southern Italians have developed a net of strong, violent and highly profitable criminal organisations with foothold in the social and political system of almost every city in the Region. This system sucked resources both from the (already lagging behind) economy and also from the Central Government investment in the infrastructure & health-care system (both among the most corrupted in Europe). These criminal organisations have been able to command the political agenda for decades, and, not unlike what happened in certain South American States, have been willing to corrupt and if necessary even kill magistrates, policemen and politicians in order to escape justice and to deadlock any attempt by the central government to repress the crimes and reform the legal grey-areas that allow criminality to thrive (e.g. legalization of marijuana).
4. Higher rates of school abandonment: for decades, Southern Italy has seen higher rates of kids abandoning school at the early years of education.
5. Inefficient investments by the Central Government: the politicians have been unable to help the South of Italy economy in any way other than:
- colossal & useless infrastructures: like colossal bridges, dams, highways, aqueducts, etc. in most of the cases never going to be completed (or even pass the initial construction stages). The bridge connecting Sicily to Calabria cost hundreds of millions of Euros already and never passed the “preliminary study” phase.
- subsidy of mega-factories from private companies (most of them would relocate elsewhere once the subsidy ended: e.g. FIAT Auto);
- Periodically hiring a ridiculously high amount of people in the Public Administration before any election cycle (e.g. the Municipality of Naples has now accumulated approximately 20k employees, Rome 23k). These public sector employees are heavily unionised and are able to blackmail any government (local or central alike) willing to update the rules governing their employment, de facto preventing any possible reform of the system which is still the same of 40–50 years ago (having been granted fantastic privileges in the past and having obtained that normal rules pertaining to the private sectors shall not apply to them). In Rome there was a three-day strike by basically all the Municipality employees once the Major of the town proposed to remove their (admittedly) fake “productivity bonus” — a robust salary subsidy given to all Municipality employees without any productivity requirement even being checked. A few months later the Major of Rome had to resign without this reform being passed. Many of these employees are not even required to show up for work: a job in a Municipality is regarded nothing more, nothing less than a sort of welfare subsidy for the employees’ family, without any requirement to carry out any actual job whatsoever.
- The politicians managed to damage the economy even more by regularly awarding public procurement contracts to companies connected with the organised crimes.
6. High level of corruption among Public Officials and State Employees: this is very unfortunate and, until very recently, purposely only blandly punished by the law. The phenomenon is widespread across all sectors and levels of the bureaucracy, political parties, State-owned entities, and it greatly contributed to the draining of resources from the legitimate economy. The former President of Region of Sicily (the highest seat in one of the most populous Italian regions) just finished serving a 7-year jail sentence for being a Mafia-aide. Mr Marcello Dell’Utri, who for a lifetime has been the right-arm of Mr. Berlusconi, is currently in jail in Rome for a similar sentence.
7. Huge «underground» economy: to exacerbate the problem, hundreds of thousands of people are employed in the economic system completely un-registered. These people are often-times paid very low-salaries, have no social-security, do not pay taxes, etc.
8. Ineffective Rule of law: in the southern part of Italy the Government has traditionally weaker control of the territory. For decades, this allowed all sorts of behaviour by people willing to breach the Law with impunity, for example:
- tens of thousands of houses built in environmentally and/or archaeologically protected areas — particularly in Campania, Sicily and Calabria where the local governments have been unable to tear them down after 40 years;
- one of the lowest tax compliance in Europe (the Region of Sicily recently admitted that less than 12% of its tax payment injunctions are eventually paid by its residents: making it a de facto tax heaven in breach of all EU rules).
- longest time for civil proceedings to recover debts;
- millions of civil and criminal proceedings for petty / administrative claims clogging the local Courts.
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The ‘Southern question’ (‘la questione meridionale’), i.e. the problem of the economic disparity between Italy’s north and south, has been studied and discussed for a very long time. To cut a long story short, the reason why the north is socially and economically similar to France, and the south to Greece is because during the 19c the north, but especially the north-west, joined the industrial revolution and developed a modern entrepreneurial middle-class and modern political institutions. The south was excluded from these developments, also because at that point the Vatican state cut Ital…
I don’t agree with most. Despite what you read is not true that south Italy before the unification was “prosperous” or “richer than the north” and then the unification case and the evil north stole their money. This is historical revisionism that actually has been already debunked many times.
Anyone can read firsthand what was written about the south since there are many available documents. At least you can read the “gattopardo” a novel that take place during the invasion.
The hard fact is that south Italy was an agrarian society completely frozen in time. Sure, some will talk about “the fir…
The south of Italy has been conquered by many people one after another. First many Greeks moved in and then they were a possession of Turkey. The Muslims moved in and then the Normans threw them out. The French took over and then the Spanish, for a short while even Germany and the holy Roman Empire owned them. They were split in two and taken back by the French. It never does any country much good to be taken over again and again, especially by foreigners. That was the secret to success in Northern Europe and England. It was the reason Romania, Bulgaria and Latvia are poor. People who could…
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It’s the Mafia. All other reasons typically cited — history, culture, mentality, infrastructure — feed or are fed by the Mafia. Why infrastructure? Because the mafia controls construction in the south, so the money that is directed at completing vital road projects ends up feeding criminal organizations and only a small amount is spent on actual construction.
There’s a great book about poverty in the south of Italy which offers vital understanding to those not familiar with the culture and history of the region. It is from the mid-1950’s and it’s called “The Moral Basis of a Backward Society…
The main reasons are:
- The lack of a project;
- The Mob ;
- The low quality of the local politicians ;
- The corruption .
In the 60’s there has been a mass emigration from the south to the north of Italy , expecially towards Piedmont , where the Fiat openly called for workers . A lot moved to Lombardy as well. That was a change because between the 2 wars and in the 19th century the southerns used to emigrate abroad . There was still some emigration in the 50’s and 60’s but not as much like in the past.
In the 60’s our Governments decided to industrialize the South to solve the everlasting problem. Fiat …