October 4, 2018 / 6:08 PM / 2 months ago

Italy targets 2019 GDP at 1.5 percent, calls for dialogue with EU on budget

ROME (Reuters) - Italy’s three-year budget plan targets economic growth at 1.5 percent next year, 1.6 percent in 2020 and 1.4 percent in 2021, Economy Minister Giovanni Tria said on Thursday in a letter to the European Commission.

The plan, which targets the fiscal deficit at 2.4 percent of gross domestic product next year, three times the goal set by the previous centre-left government, has already been criticized by the Commission for being too lax.

Tria’s letter called on the Commission to consider “the good reasons for the growth strategy set out by the government,” and said he and hoped for an “open and constructive dialogue.”

“The government enters this dialogue united and confident,” he said in the letter which was published by his ministry.

Reporting By Gavin Jones

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