Italy can't change its 2013 deficit commitment: foreign minister

ROME Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:08am EDT

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ROME (Reuters) - Italy cannot change the fiscal commitments made with its European partners for this year, Foreign Minister Emma Bonino said on Tuesday, adding to a range of views on public finance pledges expressed by Enrico Letta's new government.

"Italy cannot re-negotiate the 2.9 percent," Emma Bonino told reporters in parliament in reference to the 2013 budget deficit target of 2.9 percent of gross domestic product.

Earlier on Tuesday, Industry Minister Flavio Zanonato said Italy had to talk to the EU to allow it to exclude investment spending from deficit calculations. That view was echoed by regional affairs minister Graziano Delrio.

Center-right leader Silvio Berlusconi, a crucial stakeholder in the coalition government then said Italy "must go to Europe ... to re-negotiate the deficit commitments that we made."

(Reporting by Roberto Landucci, writing by Gavin Jones)

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