October 24, 2018 / 5:47 AM / 24 days ago

EU's Moscovici says open to constructive dialogue with Italy on budget - La Repubblica

FILE PHOTO - European Economic Commissioner Pierre Moscovici talks to journalists during a press biefing after a weekly college meeting of the European Commission in Strasbourg, France, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

MILAN (Reuters) - European Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said he was open to a constructive dialogue with Italy over its budget plans, according to an interview with daily La Repubblica published on Wednesday.

The European Commission rejected Italy’s draft 2019 budget on Tuesday, saying it brazenly broke EU rules on public spending, and asked Rome to submit a new one within three weeks or face disciplinary action.

“We are still in a constructive dialogue even if it is within a clear framework... My door is always open and I hope that the Italian government will listen to this message,” Moscovici told the paper when asked whether Italy was at loggerheads with the Commission.

“We have until the last day to find an agreement and I’ll try. After that on Nov. 21 we will make our evaluations.”

Reporting by Agnieszka Flak

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