Austerity Measures Spreading Across the EU

Italy was feeling a bit left out of all of this austerity talk..so they’ve joined in as well. On Thursday, the Italian cabinet passed a series of austerity measures that are aimed at balancing their budget by the target date of 2014.

Italian Austerity

The package they’ve passed includes €47 billion worth of deficit cuts and it will curb the budgets of both government ministries and local authorities. Before moving ahead, it’s going to have to be passed by parliament within the next two months.

As finance minister Giulio Tremonti said,

“With today’s measures we completed our path towards a balanced budget.”

Analysts have already been quick to criticize the measures, since most of the action will only take place in 2013 and 2014.

Portugal Gets in the Act

On Thursday, Portugal also said that it would be speeding up its reforms so that it will meet the terms of its €78bn EU-IMF bailout.

The National Statistics Institute published data from the first part of the year for Portugal that was much worse than expected, prompting the Portuguese prime minister, Pedro Passos Coelho to make his announcement in front of parliament. Their deficit, which is at 8.7 at themoment, needs to be cut to 5.9% of GDP this year and to 3% in 2013.

All of this has occurred as the Greek parliament accepted a law to implement even more austerity and privatization measures in Greece.

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