The EU again gives a margin of confidence to Italy. After the Government of Giuseppe Conte has committed to implement a package of measures that would mitigate the budget gaps of 2018 and 2019 and progressively stabilize its public debt, the ministers of Economy and Finance of the club have decided to push the deadline a disciplinary file against Rome that could lead to a fine of up to 3,500 million euros.
They thus attend to the recommendations of the European Commission, which with this adjustment plan on the table already advocated last Wednesday to avoid the frontal clash and block the sanctioning procedure. "A very aggressive position towards Italy is not expected," diplomatic sources had warned on the eve of the Eurogroup and Ecofin meetings that began on Monday in Brussels. And ministers like the French Bruno Le Maire congratulated himself on the new "understanding" because "opening a process of this kind would be bad for Italy and the eurozone."
The plan defended by his Italian colleague Giovanni Tria envisages a correction of 7.6 billion euros this year that will be accompanied by a decree law that eliminates an expected expenditure of 1.5 billion. By 2020 Brussels calls for "greater effort" and new adjustments. In October, with the new budget project, it will be seen if the requirements are met. Tria said Monday that "of course (these accounts) will be governed by European fiscal rules." The main challenge is to contain a public debt that, according to the latest community projection, could shoot up to 135% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Refusal to raise VAT
That is the "main reason for concern" of the community partners, insisted on Monday the president of the Eurogroup, Mario Centeno, who once again insisted that Italy should focus "all its efforts" on managing to reduce its high level of indebtedness. At the moment it refuses to do it by means of the increase of the VAT, one of the recommendations sent by Brussels.
It is the second time in six months that the European Union has put a stop to a procedure of punishment against Italy for the undoing of the debt of its public administrations, which in 2018 was the highest of the club surpassing 132% of GDP. And already then there were critical voices, like those of Holland and other countries of the north, for tolerance with Rome.
. (tagsToTranslate) vote (t) confidence (t) italy (t) buries (t) record (t) excessive debt (t)