May 26, 2013
Italy cabinet approves austerity plan
Italy's cabinet approved today an austerity package aimed at shielding the country from the Greek debt crisis and eliminating the budget deficit in 2014, a government source said.
The package, which officials have said is worth some 47 billion euros ($66.55 billion), must now be approved by parliament within 60 days.
Measures include cuts in the budgets of central government ministries and local government authorities and lower tax breaks for companies and families, according to draft versions.
No details of the final package have been released yet, with Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and top ministers expected to hold a news conference shortly.
The budget has heightened tensions within Berlusconi's centre-right coalition and his restive Northern League ally has warned the government is at risk until the package is passed by parliament.