Rome

Industry leaders 'nearing productivity deal with unions'

'But recovery still far off' says Confindustria chief

Industry leaders 'nearing productivity deal with unions'

(ANSA) - Rome, September 21 - The chief of Italy's industrial confederation on Friday said that employers and labor unions were nearing an agreement on boosting the country's productivity but an economic recovery would not come next year. "Next year will not be the year of recovery," said Confindustria head Giorgio Squinzi. "It will be another year of reflection, and I hope that the situation does not get worse," he added, referring to a recent Confindustria study that showed Italian GDP will dip by another 0.6% next year, while government figures showed a 0.2% loss. Squinzi was speaking a day after meeting Susanna Camusso, the head of Italy's most powerful labor union CGIL, to discuss boosting productivity in Italian industry. "There's room for agreement," he said, adding that the groups would arrive at something official "shortly", before Premier Mario Monti meets with European Union leaders on October 18. Monti recently said that Italy needed to boost productivity and lower labor costs like debt-laden Greece, Spain, Ireland and Portugal have done. Squinzi said that the time had come for policymakers, labor unions and industrialists to all work in unison to get the Italian economy on the path to growth. "Either we all move in the same direction, or the country won't make it," he said.

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