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PM Renzi pledges to reverse Italy's fortunes during first 100 days in office

PM Renzi pledges to reverse Italy's fortunes during first 100 days in office
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Italy’s Prime Minister has presented a sweeping package of tax cuts and pledged to carry out an ambitious package of reforms during his first 100 days in office.

In his first full news conference, Matteo Renzi said the measures would help boost Italy’s economic recovery.

“Let’s start by eliminating the excess of politics and sending a signal to the families who are struggling everyday to survive. This is an operation that I would describe as historical.”

Renzi, 39, insists job creation and growth, rather than austerity, are his priorities.

To achieve that Renzi says income tax will be reduced by around 10 billion euros annually for some 10 million low and middle income workers from May 1.

The tax cuts will mean an extra 80 euros per month in the pay packets of workers earning up to 1,500 euros.

The cuts will be financed by reductions in central government spending, extra borrowing and by resources freed up thanks to the recent fall in Italy’s borrowing costs, he said.

Renzi, who ousted his predecessor Enrico Letta in a party coup in January, was speaking after the lower house of parliament approved a new electoral law aimed at ensuring more stable governments.

It is part of a broader constitutional reform involving the abolition of the Senate as a legislative assembly and Renzi said if he failed to pull it off “I will consider my government experience and my political career to be over”.