BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Italy’s 2023 draft budget drawn up by its new government is generally in line with the policies agreed by EU governments, the European Commission said on Wednesday, noting that it did have some shortcomings .
The Commission’s opinion is part of a formal EU process under which the EU executive checks annually that euro zone countries’ draft budgets for the next year comply with EU rules.
Paolo Gentiloni, European Commissioner for Economic Affairs and former Italian Prime Minister, said “the overall judgment is positive, but there have been some critical remarks”, adding that Rome has shown the necessary prudence in its budget measures manner.
If a draft budget is deemed to be in violation of the rules, the committee can send it back and ask for a new one.
“In general, Italy’s updated draft budget plan is in line with July’s Council recommendation 2023: Italy limits growth in major state-financed current expenditures , and plan f fiscal public investment for green and digital transformation and energy security, the Commission said.
The Italian government stresses the reliability of the budget and reaffirms the development and growth vision that guides it.”
The budget is currently going through parliament and despite a raft of amendments, the aim is to have it approved by the end of the year. It focuses on curbing high energy bills and cutting taxes for wage workers and the self-employed.
“Italy should better target energy measures to reduce demand and help the most vulnerable,” European Commission Vice-President President Valdis Dombrovskis said in a Twitter post. Tax labor and make the system more efficient.
“Furthermore, Italy’s updated draft budget plan includes measures inconsistent with the structural part of previous fiscal proposals, namely in pensions and tax evasion, including the mandatory use of electronic payments and statutory thresholds for cash payments, “it says. Comment below 60 euros while increasing the maximum legal threshold for cash payments to 5,60 euros.
Despite the warnings, Italy’s economy minister was also pleased with Brussels’ verdict.
“Italy is among the half of European countries that are on track. This result is very satisfying,” Giancarlo Giorgetti said in a statement.