Executive Intelligence Review


Italy’s Finance Minister Tria Affirms Rome Was Blackmailed into Accepting Bail-In Procedures

Feb. 28, 2019 (EIRNS)—Speaking before the Finance Committee of the Senate, Italian Finance Minister Giovanni Tria reported that the Italian government was blackmailed by Germany, told that if Italy had not accepted the bail-in rule, the news would spread that the Italian banking system was bankrupt.

In Italy “everybody was against” the introduction of the bail-in, Tria said. In the 2013 Letta government, Finance Minister Fabrizio Saccomanni “was practically blackmailed by the German Finance Minister” with the threat that, had Italy not accepted the new system, “the news would spread that our banking system was one step away from bankruptcy,” Tria said.

In a related development, the EU Commission yesterday presented its Country Reports 2019, and Commissioners Valdis Dombrovskis and Pierre Moscovici scolded Italy in the press conference presenting the report.

Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Moscovici said that the Italian situation is “worrisome” and said the Commission’s message is “loud and clear: [Italy] must improve its government finances, the efficiency of the administration and of the judiciary system and strengthen the banking system.” They especially rejected the pension reform and said the government should have invested more and spent less.

In an interview with La Notizia Giornale published today, economist Nino Galloni said the Commission criticism about investments is

“a pretext. Had we carried out a policy of large investments along with less austerity, they would have told us: ‘dear Italians, you cannot afford those investments.’ ”

The Commission doesn’t want Italy to recover, Galloni said. “They see a government which is contrary to their interests and hope that nothing happens in the European elections,” i.e., to reflect the discontent with Brussels of the sort that brought Italy’s current government to power. The elections for European Parliament take place in late May.