Maroni, a senior member and former leader of the opposition right-wing party Northern League, said the proposals were not enough on their own. “I think that he is doing maybe the right things but in the wrong way. He wants to reform the labor market but…it only works if you have economic growth. That is the way you can create new jobs, not simply changing the laws.”
“We’re in a moment when economic growth is far away from coming to Italy,” he added. “Before making these reforms you need to boost economic growth and that’s not what Matteo Renzi is doing now.”
Perhaps not surprisingly for a former leader of the anti-euro, anti-immigration Northern League party, Maroni said that if Brussels did not give Italy flexibility around its fiscal target in order for Italy to return to growth, the country “should leave the European Union.” “It’s not possible to stay if this is against our interests,” he said.
Maroni resigned from the party leadership in late 2013 to concentrate on his presidency of the Lombardy region, a position he won in the national election in 2013.
The region is known for its agricultural, manufacturing and clothing industries, producing many of the “Made in Italy” brands exported globally that have helped to make the region among the wealthiest in Italy, according to Eurostat data.
Maroni said that contrary to a lack of competitiveness seen elsewhere in the Italian economy, Lombardy was thriving.
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