We should never read official forecasts as a story about the future, let alone an honest one. Economists at the European Commission are fallible human beings. The models they use to imagine reality in a few months or a year are limited and crude tools compared to reality itself. Estimates of growth or inflation are rarely proven correct. These forecasts are primarily a reflection of the prevailing opinion about a country at a given moment, and thus its direction. nothing else.
However, the analysis published by the Commission on September 11 represents a peculiarity.In Italy, growth is not only slowing down compared to last year, but also slowing down compared to what was envisaged for 2023 six months ago: this is happening in almost all countries and in Europe in general; Most importantly – an almost unique case – Brussels now expects Italy to continue to slow down as well in 2024. The only other similar case is Spain, but at a much higher dynamic pace than ours. But in Italy, GDP appears to be growing just 0.9% this year, then 0.8% next year, while the eurozone should accelerate instead (including Germany, which is in recession this year).
This may not be a completely accurate prediction. Technicians in Brussels, for example, seem to underestimate Spain’s strength (Their projected GDP in 2023 has been revised significantly upward, compared to March) and they overestimate Germany and the Netherlands (instead the estimates have been radically revised for the worse). In short, everything must be taken with caution. However, the specific travel direction of Italy makes us think. It raises questions about the upcoming budget lawEven more so if Brussels’ forecasts of Italian vulnerability are combined with those of the government itself in the latest economic and financial document. There the Treasury is already taking into account the continued slowdown of the economy in the coming years, from 1.5% growth in 2024 to 1.1% in 2026. But if we are already at zero rates this year and then next year, then, The danger facing the country is a return to long stagnation for the entire legislature.
Italy can afford it? Beyond the social consequences, or in the eyes of public opinion, it is hardly necessary to remember what will happen to the public debt. Even under a better growth scenario than the current one, it will decline only slowly; With a return to recession Containing it becomes difficult. For this reason, there is a need for reforms in the areas of competition, fairness and public administration aimed at revitalizing the economy: precisely the part of the national resilience plan that seems to have been omitted and forgotten.
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