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Italy proud of sacrifices made for recovery, president says

Napolitano hopes recession will soon end

03 December, 13:48
Italy proud of sacrifices made for recovery, president says (see related) (ANSA) - Rome, December 3 - Crisis-stricken Italy should be "satisfied and proud of efforts made for the recovery of public finances," Italian President Giorgio Napolitano said on Tuesday.

According to the Organization for Economic Development, Italy is successfully reducing its budget deficit though it is failing to cut down its public debt.

Napolitano said Italy's deficit-to-GDP ratio is "fatally influenced by lack of growth" as the country is going through its deepest and longest recession in over two decades, and expressed the hope the country will return to growth soon.

The OECD in October forecast Italy's deficit-to-GDP ratio at 3% in 2013.

The Italian government's 2014 budget bill is looking to cut down Italy's massive public debt, which stands at over two trillion euros, around 130% of GDP, with the privatization of State assets and a review of public spending.

Earlier Tuesday European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn accused Italy of not respecting debt-reduction targets and said he remained "sceptical" about planned asset sales and public-sector spending cuts.