TOP NEWS: EU Calls On Italy To Stay Committed To Lowering Public Debt

BRUSSELS (Alliance News) - Italy should stay committed to lowering its government debt, the ...

Alliance News 23 May, 2018 | 1:12PM
Email Form

BRUSSELS (Alliance News) - Italy should stay committed to lowering its government debt, the European Commission warned on Wednesday, noting, however, that it was not taking any action against the country over its current level of public debt.

Italy has been under scrutiny by the commission after its public debt level reached more than 131% of gross domestic product in 2017, and it did not comply with debt reduction benchmarks in neither 2016 nor 2017.

Under the bloc's Stability and Growth Pact, the EU requires its member states to have public debt levels below 60% of GDP.

"In the case of Italy, our analysis suggests that the debt criterion should be considered as currently complied with, notably as Italy was found broadly compliant with the preventive arm of the pact in 2017," said European Economy Commissioner Pierre Moscovici.

"The opening of an excessive deficit procedure is thus not warranted at this stage."

Moscovici said that the commission will closely follow the situation in Italy and will reassess its current analysis next spring, when data on compliance with measures for 2018 is presented.

"It's not the end of the story," Moscovici added.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella has called in the anti-establishment parties' pick for prime minister for talks later on Wednesday.

Mattarella has the final say over whether their pick becomes premier after months of negotiations between the parties following indecisive elections on March 4.

The populist Five Star Movement and League parties agreed on Monday on Giuseppe Conte, a 54-year-old law professor and political novice, as their pick for prime minister.

The proposal of Conte has stirred anxiety in Brussels and the financial markets.

M5S and League leaders have promised to slash taxes, ease austerity, boost welfare spending and increase deportations of undocumented migrants.

The new administration's spending plans come even as Italy has one of the highest debt-to-gross domestic product ratios in the world.

The eurosceptic parties also pledged to review Italy's treaties with the EU.

Copyright dpa

Email Form

About Author

Alliance News

Alliance News provides Morningstar with continuously updating coverage of news affecting listed companies.

Audience Confirmation

By clicking 'accept' I acknowledge that this website uses cookies and other technologies to tailor my experience and understand how I and other visitors use our site. See 'Cookie Consent' for more detail.

  • Other Morningstar Websites
© Copyright 2020 Morningstar, Inc. All rights reserved.

Terms of Use        Privacy Policy        Cookies