Italian union calls for taxes to be dropped on '13th salary'

CGIL says move would boost weak consumer spending

Italian union calls for taxes to be dropped on '13th salary'

(ANSA) - Rome, September 3 - Italy's biggest trade union has called for taxes to be dropped on the extra salary that the country's workers and pensioners are paid in December to help boost weak consumer spending. Susanna Camusso, the head of the left-wing CGIL union, said the move could be financed by money raised from the fight on rampant tax evasion in recession-hit Italy. Camusso told Rome-based daily La Repubblica that the government needed to show a "signal of discontinuity" with the policies it has pursued up to now and "give a little more money to the workers". The CGIL has been highly critical of many moves made by Premier Mario Monti's emergency administration of non-political technocrats, especially its public sector cuts and reforms of the labour market to make it easier for firms to fire workers. Camusso said Italy's unions may call a general strike if the government does not give "answers" to their concerns. Italian workers' and pensioners' salaries are paid in 13 installments, with an extra one on December to help with the spending families traditionally incur over the Christmas period.

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