(ANSA) - Rome, June 29 - The Italian government on Wednesday
allocated a total of 1.5 billion euros to fund a package of
measures aimed at tackling Italy's dramatic jobs crisis, Premier
Enrico Letta said after a cabinet meeting.
The package focuses in particular on the under-30s, with
tax breaks for firms that take on people aged 15-29 on permanent
Out of the 1.5 billion euros, 794 million will fund tax
breaks for new hires under 30 between 2013 and 2016; 500 million
will go to the poorer southern regions and 294 to the other
regions in the Centre-North.
Other measures to boost youth employment in the South
include 80 million euros to fund small enterprises, another 80
million to re-finance an Action and Cohesion plan aimed at the
development of Italy's southern regions and 168 million for
traineeships targeting youths who are out of school and jobless.
Unemployment in recession-hit Italy has reached a record
high of 12% and one in four young people aged 15-24 are jobless.
Unemployment in southern Italy was 17.2% last year,
according to national statistics agency Istat.
The package is intended to be part of measures to fight
unemployment, ahead of this week's European Union summit, which
will also focus on this problem.