EU commission urges legal action against Italy over debt

National Business

EU commission urges legal action against Italy over debt

The Associated Press

June 05, 2019 03:54 AM

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Italian Deputy Premier and Interior Minister, Matteo Salvini, speaks during a press conference at the Senate in Rome, Thursday, May 30, 2019. Salvini said that he was confident the government’s reply to a letter from the European Commission about its fiscal policy will avert the opening of an infringement procedure. “This morning I had an hour and a half of talks with the Economy Minister (Giovanni Tria) about the letter, which we will respond to politely with positive numbers that will shelter us from other letters or infringement procedures,” the League leader told.


ANSA via AP

Claudio Peri


BRUSSELS

The European Commission is recommending that legal action be taken against the Italy because it failed to respect EU debt rules last year and looks like doing so in coming years, too.

The commission made the recommendation Wednesday and EU member states must now assess the extent of any action against Italy. It could face billions of euros in fines.

Italy’s public debt stood at over 132% of GDP in 2018, far above the EU’s 60% limit.

The country only won EU approval for its 2019 budget plan after agreeing to reduce the deficit to acceptable levels.

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The action comes at a time of rising tensions between Brussels and Deputy Premier Matteo Salvini, who has been emboldened by his right-wing League party’s strong gains in last month’s EU elections.

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