Draghi pushes Italy to stick to facts on budget

FRANKFURT – European Central Bank President Mario Draghi calls for Italy’s government to keep its debt and budget plans under control as wild promises and conflicting messages have already hurt the economy, a press conference heard on Thursday.

 “Words have changed many times in the last few months, I am waiting for the new budget plans and the parliamentary discussion following it. Words have had negative consequences and have created some damage. Interest rates have gone up for households and gone up for firms,” said Draghi.

 The comments are an attack on the rhetoric of Italy’s deputy prime ministers Luigi Di Maio and Matteo Salvini. Their aggressive political dialogue have created uncertainty amongst investors, created doubt about Italy’s effort to keep debt in check and increased bond yields.

“ECB’s Draghi should help Italy and not just criticize it,” said Salvini, following Draghi’s press conference.