Italy slams proposed EU budget

Photo: EPA Italian Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero Milanesi (L) shakes hands with EU Budget Commissioner, Gunther Oettinger (R), Rome, 13 September.

The European Commission's current proposal seems inadequate as it doesn't sufficiently answer citizens' concerns and expectations, Italian Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero said after meeting EU Budget Commissioner Gunther Oettinger in Rome on Thursday. Italy wants more money to help resolve its migrant issue, a particularly sensitive topic since the anti-immigration League joined the government earlier this year.

"Italy considers major attention to migrations indispensable, firstly through much more financing of socio-economic development for migrants' countries of origin and transit," minister said. He also complained "the regrettable trend of the last 30 years of reducing European funds for African countries". Brussels should emit bonds "to pay for concrete investment projects that favour competitiveness", Moavero said.

Italy is still set to veto the EU budget in a row over funds and migrants, Deputy Premier Luigi Di Maio said after his talks with Commissioner Oettinger in Rome on Thursday, ANSA reported. "Our position on the planning of the European budget has not changed for the moment," said Di Maio, who is also labour and industry minister.


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