Conte submits its government program to vote in parliament in Italy

Ⓒ AFP – Andreas Solaro – | Giuseppe Conte, 53, was a stranger to the Italians before being appointed by the Five Star Movement (M5S, antisystem) and the League (far right) to lead the executive

The new Italian head of government, Giuseppe Conte, asks on Wednesday for the confidence of the deputies to his program, which turns its back on austerity, although not on Europe, after obtaining the approval of the senators on Tuesday.

The vote of confidence of the 630 deputies will be held on Wednesday afternoon. The new government has a comfortable majority of more than 30 deputies.

Giuseppe Conte, 53, was a stranger to the Italians before being appointed by the Five Star Movement (M5S, antisystem) and the League (far right) to direct the executive.

Before the Senate, Conte defended the program of this first populist government in a founding country of the European Union. He said he intends to reduce the huge debt of Italy, the most important in the euro zone after Greece, but not by austerity measures.

This law professor wanted to be reassuring with the European partners of Italy, and confirmed the European and Atlantic anchorage of his country.

“Europe is our home,” he said, and also claimed Italy’s membership in the Atlantic Alliance.

This did not prevent him from confirming his willingness to practice a policy of “opening” towards Russia, in accordance with the electoral commitments of the “two main partners” of the government coalition, the League and the M5S.

But it’s about knowing what Europe was referring to Conte. Especially when on the eve of his speech, Matteo Salvini, head of La Liga, reported that he had a telephone conversation with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, in which both men agreed to work together to “change the rules of this EU” .

– G7 in Canada –

Conte will have the opportunity to explain his project to the main Western countries, on the occasion of a G7 summit in Canada, his first international outing.

The new president of the Italian Council has already interviewed several leaders by phone, including French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Some European officials are skeptical about the cost of the fiscal, economic and social measures provided for by the “government contract” signed by La Liga and the M5S, of which Conte claims to be the “guarantor”.

“We are going to have a good summer, but there will be problems in autumn if the new government only applies 50% of what it has foreseen”, predicts Klaus Regling, head of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), the fund implemented by the EU to help the States in difficulties, quoted by the German financial newspaper Handelsblatt.

And, from this point of view, Conte has confirmed the objectives included in the “contract” of his government: reduction of taxation, fight against clandestine immigration or citizen income, a kind of insertion income for the poorest.

But he has not given details about the financing of these measures, which could amount to tens of billions of euros.

And although he has confirmed the will of his government to establish a “flat tax”, a tax on income of between 15% and 20%, has not talked about dates. The same happens with citizen income.

– Missing points –

But that does not reassure the markets or certain European countries, as highlighted on Wednesday by the press.

In Conte’s speech, “three fundamental points are totally absent: deadlines, funding and priorities: how can taxes be reduced and at the same time increase health, social, security and retirement expenses?” The editor of the newspaper La Repubblica, near the left, was questioned.

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