Italy's industrialists, retailers disagree over VAT hike
Averting rise 'not the priority' for Confindustria chief23 September, 13:07
Giorgio Squinzi, the head of industrial employers' confederation Confindustria, said that avoiding the 1% increase in the top band of VAT, which would take it from 21% to 22%, was "not the priority".
Squinzi said that he though the government should give utmost importance to cutting labour taxes, saying this would "give a greater impulse to reviving the economy".
But retailers association Confcommercio did not agree, saying the rise would further depress consumer spending as Italy tries to emerge from its longest recession in over two decades.
"The recessive, depressive effects of an eventual increase in VAT are certain," said Confcommercio.
"We already saw it in the dramatic year of 2012 after an increase in the band from 20% to 21%. "It is equally clear that the necessary money (to avert the hike) can and must be found via a more courageous, determined attitude regarding cuts to public spending, which have been very timid up to now".