October 22, 2018 / 6:35 AM / a month ago

Austria says EU must reject Italy's draft budget unless it is changed

VIENNA, Oct 22 (Reuters) - The European Commission must reject Italy’s draft budget unless changes are made to it, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz of Austria, which holds the European Union’s rotating presidency, said on Monday.

The Commission has condemned as an unprecedented breach of EU fiscal rules Italy’s 2019 budget plan, which aims to lift the deficit to 2.4 percent of domestic output next year from 1.8 percent in 2018. Italy expects the Commission to revise it, a government source said on Sunday.

“If it is not amended, the European Commission must reject the budget,” Kurz said in a statement issued by Austrian Finance Minister Hartwig Loeger’s office. (Reporting by Francois Murphy Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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