December 5, 2018 / 6:51 AM / 14 days ago

Italian PM says can change 'a few little things' on budget

FILE PHOTO: Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte holds a news conference on the final day of the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina December 1, 2018. REUTERS/Agustin Marcarian/File Photo

MILAN (Reuters) - Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte was quoted as saying on Wednesday he was ready to amend slightly some of the measures included in the country’s 2019 budget in a bid to overcome a rejection by the European Commission.

“If I have the chance to reduce the economic impact of some measures I’m here,” Conte told la Repubblica daily.

“I’m the one who is entitled to speak with the European Commission ... and I never halted discussions. Right now if I can recover some funds, tweak the final figure, change a few little things, it doesn’t mean I’m backtracking,” he said.

“If they bring me calculations which allow me to write 2.3 percent or 2.1 percent I’m still carrying out proposed reforms,” he added in reference to next year’s deficit goal of 2.4 percent of gross domestic product.

Reporting by Valentina Za, editing by Giselda Vagnoni

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