December 18, 2018 / 7:14 AM / a year ago

EU's Moscovici: working to ensure Italy avoids deficit sanctions

PARIS (Reuters) - The European Union was trying to find a solution to Italy’s budget problems in order to avoid a sanctions procedure, European Economic Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said on Tuesday.

The Commission has rejected Rome’s budget, saying it will not cut Italy’s large public debt as the rules require.

Speaking on France’s RTL radio, Moscovici also reiterated that France’s expected overshooting of the EU’s 3 percent of GDP deficit ceiling next year was tolerable if it was just a temporary measure, and would not entail fines.

“I’ve been working hard, almost day and night ... so that Italy will not be sanctioned either,” Moscovici said. “We’re working non-stop as part of a dialogue so that Italy can carry out the policies it wants, while respecting the rules.”

Reporting by Sarah White and Danielle Rouquie, Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta

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