Italy: Deficit –7.4%, Highest in Europe

The indicator increased by 0.2% due to Superbonus loans

According to the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), Italy ended 2023 with a deficit of –7.4%. The figure is 0.2% worse than the latest estimates due to “the latest data on the expenditure on tax exemptions related to the Superbonus (a subsidy for real estate renovation that costs the state 135 billion euros – ed.),” as explained by the institute during a hearing on the DEF (economic and financial document) in the budget committees of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.

Sergio Nicoletti Altimari, head of the Economy and Statistics Department of the Bank of Italy, again at the DEF hearing, identified risk factors for the country in international trade, in the impact of restrictive monetary policy on demand.

According to the Bank of Italy, GDP will grow by 0.6% this year, 0.9% in 2025, and 1.3% in 2026.

All EU states, except Cyprus and Denmark (+3.1%), Ireland (+1.7%), and Portugal (+1.2%), recorded deficits in 2023. The highest deficits were recorded in Italy (–7.4%), Hungary (–6.7%), and Romania (–6.6%). According to Eurostat, eleven EU member states recorded deficits of more than 3% of GDP.

As of 2023, the lowest public debt-to-GDP ratios were recorded in Estonia (19.6%), Bulgaria (23.1%), Luxembourg (25.7%), Denmark (29.3%), Sweden (31.2%), and Lithuania (38.3%). Thirteen member states have a public debt-to-GDP ratio above 60%, with the highest values recorded in Greece (161.9%), Italy (137.3%), France (110.6%), Spain (107.7%), and Belgium (105.2%).