Letta meets unions for talks on jobs emergency

Govt to look at package to combat youth unemployment Wednesday

Letta meets unions for talks on jobs emergency

Rome, June 24 - Premier Enrico Letta had two hours of talks with the leaders of Italy's three big trade-union confederations on Monday to discuss the country's jobs emergency. Letta has said combatting unemployment is the top priority for his left-right government, which took power in April, as Italy's jobless rate has hit a record high of 12% and around four in 10 young people aged 15-to-24 are out of work. The Italian premier successfully lobbied for this week's summit of European Union leaders to focus on youth unemployment. The government is hoping to pass a package of measures to combat youth unemployment at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday so Letta can show it is leading by example at the summit in Brussels later in the week. But the big unions, CGIL, CISL and UIL, have expressed doubts about how effective those measures will be and accused the government of delivering words instead of action at a joint rally in Rome on Saturday.

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