Italy tells euro zone peers working on compromise over budget

Euro gdp nordea

The discussion comes as Italy is asked to submit revised spending plans by November 13, after the European Commission essentially rejected the country's budget for 2019, saying that it constitutes a clear deviation from commonly agreed fiscal rules.

13 to submit a new draft.

The official said it was premature at this stage to say whether Italy would change its budget, which European peers asked Rome to change.

Italian leaders insist the low growth rate is all the more reason to kickstart the economy through a spending spree, but Brussels fears the rising deficit could further feed Italy's exploding debt.

The coalition has indeed built its 2019 budget on a very optimistic growth forecast of 1.5%, when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects only 1% and the European Commission - which must present new forecasts Jeudi - on 1.1%.

Eurozone finance ministers are meeting for the first time since the European Commission rejected Rome's 2019 budget in a historic move. Many are concerned that Europe would be subjected to unprecedented financial turmoil if Italy were to lose control of its finances. "Above all, the European Commission is extending a hand to Italy and I would like Italy to grasp that hand".

Italy has Europe's fourth-largest economy and the bloc would struggle to bail it out. "The rules are the rules", said Moscovici.

The vice-Prime minister Matteo Salvini, the boss of the League, responded by calling on its supporters to protest on December 8 in Rome, to say "peacefully" to the "gentlemen of Brussels: let us work, live, and breathe".

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"No, we're not negotiating".

Italy already owes 2.3 trillion euros ($2.6 trillion), a sum equivalent to 131 percent of its GDP, and even if Brussels fails to punish Rome, many assume the markets will.

Once Italy responds to the commission, the EU's executive arm will have three weeks to publish its final assessment on whether the country's spending plans are in breach of European Union rules.

Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra backed the budget supervision process but he would not speculate about what Italy might do or what response might be needed if it refuses to submit a new plan.

"On Nov. 19 we'll hold an extraordinary Eurogroup here in Brussels and this meeting will be mostly dedicated to euro-area reform", Eurogroup President Mario Centeno tells reporters after the meeting.

Italy's deputy prime minister told the Financial Times in an interview published Sunday that he believes Rome's controversial spending plans will become "a recipe" for reviving European growth and that the continent is ready to abandon austerity and embrace the deficit-busting approach of United States president Donald Trump. "I really hope that the Italian government will seize the hand offered,"said French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire".

Italian Finance Minister Giovanni Tria sits during a meeting of Eurogroup Finance Ministers at the European Council headquarters in Brussels, Monday, Nov. 5, 2018.

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