Petrol prices increased to help fund quake recovery

ROME -- The government has announced several measures to help deal with the emergency in the centre-north of Italy following two devastating earthquakes that killed 24 and left 15,000 homeless.

 Among the measures is a two cent rise in excise duty on fuel for road transport. The state of emergency has been extended to the provinces of Reggio Emilia and Rovigo.

 The Interior Ministry said a law will be enacted for the provision of grants for rebuilding and repairing homes, the reconstruction and operation of public services, especially schools, for compensation and assistance to businesses and cultural assets, the relocation of "productive enterprises" and the suspension of certain tax and social security payments and evictions procedures.

 The Cabinet has also declared Monday June 4 as a day of national mourning.