June 21, 2019 / 12:28 PM / a month ago

Italy's PM backs tax cuts, wants tax evasion clampdown

BRUSSELS, June 21 (Reuters) - Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said on Friday he was in favour of a broad reform that would cut taxes but also reduce tax evasion in the country, in remarks that may complicate talks with the European Union over Rome’s growing debt.

Conte said he agreed with Deputy Prime Minister and far-right leader Matteo Salvini who is calling for significant tax cuts.

“Salvini’s ideas (on tax cuts) are the same as mine, but I am perhaps more ambitious,” Conte told a news conference, adding the reform should be based on the principle that taxes should be lower, but everybody should pay them.

Brussels wants Italy to reduce its debt this year and next and has opposed wide tax cuts if they are not offset by new revenues or spending reductions - options that Rome has so far dismissed. (Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; editing by John Stonestreet)

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