Our economic fundamentals strong: Italys ambassador

Written by Huma Siddiqui | New Delhi | Updated: Oct 29 2011, 09:24am hrs
Admitting that a flabby debt remains one of the concern areas of Italys economy, the countrys government, however, refuses to be bogged down by the ongoing European financial crisis. It says Italys underlying macroeconomic fundamentals are strong.

It is true that Italy holds a large public debt stock but it should also be noted that over half of Italys debt is held domestically, said Giacomo Sanfelice di Monteforte, the Italian ambassador to India. Therefore, I believe that Italy is well placed to overcome the current global economic turmoil, he added.

Monteforte said his governments economic strategy was strongly committed to fiscal consolidation the forecast for 2012 projects a primary surplus budget of 2% of GDP.

Italy, along with much of Europe, is facing a debt crisis. But Italy is not as close to the precipice as Greece or Ireland. It has the eighth largest economy in the world, dwarfing the Greek and Irish economies combined.

According to the envoy, the fundamentals of the Italian economy are very solid and there are no major macroeconomic imbalances. Besides, it has a strong manufacturing base. We are the worlds seventh largest exporter. Italy has not been affected by the bubbles in the housing market; the Italian banking sector suffered no setback in 2008; and private savings are among the highest in EU countries, he said.

Commenting on the new package of measures adopted by the European Council (EC) to support Greece, the Italian foreign minister, Franco Frattini, has declared: We are satisfied by the results of the European Council in terms of governance and solutions to the current economic crisis. The decisions of the EC clearly strengthen the euro and the EU as a whole. Europe is now stronger and ready for further integration and cooperation.

The Italian envoy said both Europe and Italy needed to promote a steady growth of GDP, a goal that could be achieved also through closer partnership with a number of key countries, including India.