After a couple of weeks of vacation spent between Puglia and Albania, Giorgia Meloni returned to Palazzo Chigi. An hour or so in her office yesterday afternoon, for an update on some dossiers and to prepare for the restart. «I would like to thank the inhabitants of Ceglie Messapica and all the Apulian friends for the hospitality of these days in their wonderful land. At work to build an Italy that thinks big again, to be aware of its value and its still unexpressed potential “, the message launched on social mediatogether with a photo in which she is portrayed while taking notes on a post-it block, on the eve of the last weekend of August which arrives with petrol at an altitude of 2.8 per served on the A21 Turin-Piacenza.
The high price of fuel is at the forefront of the situations to be faced by the government. The opposition calls for a cut in excise duties, a hypothesis on which benefits and costs have been evaluated for some time. In recent days, the undersecretary of the Northern League Claudio Durigon has proposed the possibility of “a first filing” using the higher revenue from VAT. But not everyone in the centre-right agrees with this intervention. «Reducing excise duties now is irresponsible. It costs 1 billion euros and is a horizontal cut that applies to those who have a large engine car and for those who earn 1,200 euros and have a small car – warned the leader of Noi Moderati, Maurizio Lupi, with reasoning similar to that proposed in recent days by the Minister of Agriculture, Francesco Lollobrigida -. It’s better to focus that billion on helping people in need. Either we understand this or the flags no longer fly». At the moment there is no provision of this kind in preparation for the first Council of Ministers after the summer break. There is reserve on the possible agenda. The Ministry of the Economy and that of Made in Italy are at work, according to some government sources, according to others it will be a “light” meeting.
Any choice must be included in the larger framework of the guidelines of the second maneuver of the Meloni government. After having closed ranks in his party, with the assignments to his sister Arianna and the undersecretary Giovanbattista Fazzolari, the prime minister is preparing to consolidate her coalition in view of a budget law in which someone may be tempted to place flags close to the European elections. A majority meeting is expected on Monday 4 September. So far there are 6-7 billion euros available, a total of around 30 should be needed. From Palazzo Chigi downwards, prudence tends to be preached in government. The ministries have sent their wishes but obviously not all of them can be granted. For education, Minister Giuseppe Valditara is optimistic: “I certainly expect that a good part of our requests will be, to some extent, accepted”.
The government’s room for maneuver is also linked to the outcome of the negotiations in the European Union on the Stability Pact. On the Italian front, we want to avoid the return of the pre-Covid parameters in any way, and in the event of no agreement at the end of the year, we hope for a “buffer” extension period. The negotiation is open, and will be among the topics of Tuesday’s meeting in Athens between Meloni and the Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis: for the premier he is a bridge between the EPP and the conservative group, for Italy an ally given that on many issues the two countries have aligned interests. Also on the management of migrants. Rome and Athens insist that it be concretely addressed by the European Union at the Community level.