World Economy

Italy Must Reduce Debt Burden

Italy Must Reduce Debt BurdenItaly Must Reduce Debt Burden

Italian Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan says his country’s next government must focus on reducing one of the world’s largest debt burdens, Reuters reported. Padoan, who will stand for election to parliament with the ruling Democratic Party when Italians go to the polls on March 4, was addressing a televised news conference after a meeting of European Union finance ministers in Brussels. “I think the emphasis in the coming years, in the next legislature, needs above all to be on a mechanism that guarantees a constant and credible fall in the debt,” he said. There has been no reduction in Italy’s public debt, the second highest in the eurozone at 132% of economic output, under the current government led by the PD. Tax promises are a staple of elections, but Italy has less room than most for fiscal profligacy given its strained coffers and a debt ratio that’s second only to Greece in the 19-nation eurozone. Extravagance is also unlikely to sit well with the central bank, which just last week renewed its call for fiscal responsibility.


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