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Treatment that does more harm than the disease; Italy criticises the ECB’s move to keep raising interest rates

Italy criticised the European Central Bank (ECB) for continuously raising interest rates to control inflation. Interest rates in the euro area are currently at 3.5%, having been raised again in June. This is the first rate increase in over 20 years. Furthermore, the ECB has stated that rates will be raised again in July.

While controlling inflation is necessary, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni believes that raising interest rates is not the best course of action. Meloni also referred to the rate increase as a “treatment that causes more harm than the disease.”

Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini also criticised the continued rate hikes as unwise and counterproductive. He also inquired whether ECB President Christine Lagarde was aware of the increase in repayments as a result of the rate hike. Salvini has stated that he will speak with the Italian representative at the ECB about the situation.

Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani opposed the move to raise interest rates, adding that he did not think the decision would help growth.

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