Italian Government Approves New Measures

Premier Mario Monti said Sunday that his government of technocrats has approved a package of austerity and growth measures to "reawaken" the Italian economy and help save the euro common currency from collapse.

The measures include immediate cuts to the costs of maintaining Italy's bulky political class as well as significant measures to fight tax evasion, Monti told a news conference following a three-hour Cabinet meeting.

As part of the political cost cuts, Monti said he would forego his salary as premiere.

The package also includes measures to spur growth and competition, while aiming to stamp out rampant nepotism.

"We gave a lot of weight to fairness, we had to distribute some of the sacrifices but we took a lot of care to distribute them in a fair way," Monti said.

Monti will outline the measures on Monday to Parliament, which must approve them.

The premier spent the weekend briefing political parties, unions, business groups, consumer lobbies and others.

This program aired on December 4, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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