CERNOBBIO, Italy (Reuters) – Italy is not expected to take on more debt to respond to the energy crisis, but it should be able to modify its European Union-backed stimulus program to ease pressures, the leader of the European Union said on Sunday. Brothers from Italy, Giorgia Meloni.
Meloni’s party is the largest of a centre-right alliance poised to win the September 25 national election.
There are fears a new government could walk away from some of the reforms needed to ensure Italy has access to some 200 billion euros ($199 billion) in EU funds for its recovery and resilience plan post-COVID (PNRR).
“It cannot be heresy to say that the PNRR, which was drafted before the current situation, cannot be changed. It is stated in the rules of the PNRR,” Meloni told the business conference. of the Ambrosetti Forum.
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She suggested that a small part of the funds could be diverted to support measures such as decoupling the price of electricity from local gas prices to help Italian consumers.
Matteo Salvini, leader of the League Party who is also a member of the centre-right alliance, said action was needed now to help Italian businesses and households.
“The problem is now. Life is now, survival is now,” he said at the same meeting in northern Italy.
“October is late, November is late,” he added, suggesting Italy should consider copying a €65 billion package adopted by Germany on Sunday.
(Reporting by Francesco Zecchini; Writing by Keith Weir; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne)
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