S&D Euro MPs are calling on the Italian authorities to engage in constructive dialogue with the EU in order to present a budget for 2019 aiming at improving the living conditions of Italian citizens.
Hence, in an unprecedented move, the European Commission yesterday rejected the budget plan presented by the populist government led by Giuseppe Conte.
S&D Group vice-president responsible for economic and monetary affairs, Mercedes Bresso, stated:
“The Italian government has deliberately opened a conflict with the EU institutions on the budget for 2019. They try to picture a fight with Europe against Italy for electoral purposes, but this is a deception.
“The proposal of the Italian government will be harmful to the most vulnerable Italians, starting with workers, families and SMEs. That is why the real fight will be about the future we want for Europe. In this, progressive forces must come together and propose an alternative vision for the future of Italy and Europe.”
S&D Euro MP and chair of the economic and monetary affairs committee, Roberto Gualtieri, added:
“This Italian government has presented a populist budget and an electoral one. This is a reckless and populist move that will be paid by the next Italian generations. No one should dare to play with the future of its own citizens for cheap electoral speculation.
“Contrary to the government’s allegations, the draft budget paves the way for new austerity measures. The new measures introduced by the government are mostly financed by a shameful tax amnesty and will require in the following years huge expenditure cuts, which will undermine welfare, research and education, and investments.
“It is nothing close to an investment growth oriented budget. We call on the Italian authorities to engage in a dialogue with the European Commission with the aim to supporting investment and boosting job creation.”
S&D Group spokesperson for the economic and monetary affairs, Pervenche Berès, added:
“Italy has benefited, for several years, from the flexibility offered by the European fiscal rules up to €30 billion (1.8% of Italian GDP and 8.9 of the Juncker plan to support investment, SMEs and create jobs. We will go on standing strong in defending Italian people under the leadership of Commissioner Moscovici.
“By breaking its commitments, Italy is breaching trust among European partners. In addition, and by doing so, the right wing Italian government also jeopardise any attempt for a serious discussion about the much needed reform of the Eurozone and review of the Stability and Growth Pact that must be aligned with investment target, aggregate demand and sustainable development goals.”