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Pierre Moscovici: "Do not shoot the pianist (in Brussels).



On the tenth floor of Berlaymont, the building of the Commission of the European Union at the door of the head of the cabinet of Prime Minister Pierre Moscovici, the image of a commissioner for economic affairs was hanged, which in almost frenzied way looks at the face of Minister Giovanni Giovanni Tria. The code reads: «Let's start stress»,« Stress starts ». Meanwhile, in his office, Moscovici relaxes after a lunch with a candle lamp and the French translation of Italo Sveva. Two o'clock earlier, he announced the first move in Italian accounts, and Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini replied, "I'm waiting for a letter from Santa Claus."

Commissioner, what is the effect of such an answer?
"I am not a red suit or a white beard, and I am not Santa Claus: I am a trustee for economic and financial affairs and I think that these issues should relate to mutual respect, seriousness and dignity, not with ease and irony that screams It's important for the Italians and for all Europeans Let's take it because there is so much work in this situation that nobody wants it Of course not us Dialogue is not an option It's imperative more than ever. "

You are talking to a minister of economy who has no power, but not with those who have: Salvini's Deputy Prime Minister and Luigi Di Maio. Do not you have to call them?
"We can not be considered as the government of the great G7 countries, the third largest economy in the eurozone and the country's institutions, the Potemkin village or papier-mache, and the institutions must be seriously understood." When I spoke to my collocutor Triad when the President of the Republic of Rome with people who represent the real institutions, we can not question the legitimacy of our interlocutors, then they need to see with colleagues how dialogue can be organized. "

For now, it's between deaf, zero steps ahead.
"I would not say that in this way. Keeping the contact of dialogue means staying in a common framework, the eurozone and the common institutions like the Eurogroup, which means that we are talking about institutions that have an important past and an important future. about maneuvering, so he understands what it is about. I will continue to compare with my interlocutors and if at some point there is a chance to meet with Salvini or Di Maio in informal conversations, I'm not against. But institutionally, my interlocutors will always be Tria and Prime Minister ".

Is the spread linked to more than 300 points for Italy?
"It is not for us to say that we do not comment on market trends and we are not trying to cause them, we are regulators, not speculators, but the high level of spread has the consequences we know, so we wonder what is spreading and do not mix a fever thermometer … ».

Will not you shake markets with your actions?
"This is not a thermometer that causes fever, it is a fever that causes the thermometer to rise. sometimes aggressive political leaders, so I'm so cautious, I'm not sure I would be equally cautious with the other government. "

You are criticized in Italy for clear political statements …
"If our statements are absurd, arbitrary, unfounded, and there is confidence in the Italian market, it is a question of whether or not it is a market economy, fiscal policy or debt path, investors would ignore us, but that is not the case. "

You said the Italians chose a xenophobic government. Do you feel like a neutral regulator, how do you say, or do you do politics? Can you do both together?
"We can climb the stairs and chew gum chewing gum at the same time Those who think that commissioners are inevitable bureaucrats are wrong: politicians are accountable to the European Parliament as ministers in front of national parliaments, we belong to European parties and we are free to have our conviction. in no way shares the ideas of the party leader Matteo Salvini, he is a friend of Marine Le Pen, I fight in France, this is my right, even if they have given me statements that are not mine.For example, when I was talking about "the little Mussolini "In Italy, there are those who believed to be recognized, but I was talking about the process initiated by the European Parliament in the other country, oddly, I do not know why this Freudian reaction has come from Italy, but in my impartial role I respect the Commissioner the institutional role of Salvinius and Di Mao, and I am friendly to Italy, support the flexibility, the enemy of sanctions and one of the least in applying the rule a. Such was the case with the previous Italian governments, it is also this. "

The IMF proposes a slow and gradual consolidation of the account for Italy. When do you make recommendations for the procedure, will you do the same?
"My password: step by step I refuse to jump to the conclusion We have just started a process that could lead to the opening of the procedure But the following is not written yet: neither the rhythm of the path of deficit and debt reduction, so stretching is not the right answer: too much we are in the affirmation that we are a chain element, but the other country decides and Italy is under the watch of all governments, unanimously in the opinion that the country is not on the right path. they are in a path that declines debt reduction and does not generate growth. If anything, the opposite. "

Salvini and Di Maio used this procedure as a tool to make us electoral campaigns to Europeans. Do you mean that?
"Every day, that's why the attitude and the language of the Commission are very clever, I do not want to go too far or overestimate my role, and our task is not to hit harder or faster for the market to move." We are the Guardians of the Contract who apply the process step by step. We are not in a position in the Italian debate: I have no comment on the opportunity to make a poverty or infrastructure program. "

Are you affected by deficit deficits or how does the specific use of the deficit affect growth?
"I'm interested in selling, that's the rule, but for the growth forecasts we are also interested in the composition of the budget, and it does not seem appropriate because Italy's main problem is the weakness of its productivity." If there are spending measures, it would be better to focus on investments.

So if the budget was more favorable for investment and productivity growth, would the situation be less serious with the same shortage?
"I did not say it. It is my responsibility to ensure the reduction of structural deficits and oversight of public debt."

Market tension was born with the Italian political turnaround, but you almost reacted that this is an economic problem as in 2011. Do you think that you are thinking?
"If there is someone to live in, it's the Italian government."

November 21, 2018 (Revised November 21, 2018 | 23:51)

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