Euro­zone de­liv­ers Italy warn­ing on bud­get rules

The Phnom Penh Post - - BUSINESS -

EURO­ZONE fi­nance min­is­ters firmly warned Italy on Mon­day to abide by EU rules on pub­lic spend­ing, just days af­ter Rome an­nounced a big spend­ing boost in de­fi­ance of Brus­sels. But, meet­ing in Lux­em­bourg, the min­is­ters also vowed not to rush to judge­ment on the eco­nomic plans laid out by Italy’s pop­ulist gov­ern­ment, which have al­ready spooked mar­kets and put the coun­try’s al­ready frag­ile econ­omy un­der pres­sure. “I just want to make very clear that ... the rules are the same for ev­ery state be­cause our fu­tures are linked,” French Fi­nance Min­is­ter Bruno Le Maire said ahead of the reg­u­lar monthly talks with his euro­zone coun­ter­parts. How­ever, “rush­ing is not the best ad­vice”, he said, adding that min­is­ters must move ahead “step by step” be­fore com­ing down on Italy too strongly. The frag­ile state of Italy’s econ­omy has reawak­ened mem­o­ries of the debt cri­sis amid dan­gers Italy could face puni­tive mea­sures by EU part­ners if it in­sisted on break­ing bloc rules on run­ning ex­ces­sive deficits and high debt.

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