European Commission says signs of easing recession expected

Spokesperson calls on Italy to keep up pace of economic reforms

European Commission says signs of easing recession expected

Brussels, August 6 - A European Commission spokesperson on Tuesday commented that easing contraction of the Italian economy in the second quarter was both expected and consistent with signs that recession may be easing across Europe, and that Italy must continue with economic reforms the EC recommended in May. In response to the Italian statistical agency Istat's Tuesday report that Italy's gross domestic product (GDP) fell just 0.2% in the second quarter compared to the first - but still marked the eighth consecutive quarterly contraction - the EC spokesperson said the data ''are not a surprise; they are in line with Brussel's latest spring forecasts''. ''Italy still needs to find a path toward growth, and to do so it must keep step with economic reforms,'' the spokesperson continued. ''It is worth noting that there are positive signs in recent data that appear to confirm that European economies, Italy included, are slowly emerging from recession,'' the spokesperson said.

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