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Published: Tuesday March 11, 2014 MYT 3:00:17 AM
Updated: Tuesday March 11, 2014 MYT 3:01:44 AM

Italy must wait to see if reform efforts impact budget goals - minister

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Italy will have to wait to judge whether planned structural reforms will affect its ability to meet strict European Union budget limits, Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan said on Monday.

Speaking after a meeting of euro zone finance ministers in Brussels, Padoan said that it was generally accepted that structural reform measures, which took time to bear fruit, could have a temporary impact on public finances.

"Naturally there could be implications for the profile of public finances which would of course be clearly linked to the structural measures," he said.

"This is the principle, whether this leads to respecting the limits with greater or lesser precision is something we don't know. We will see."

He said the principle was generally accepted by Italy's Eurogroup partners. "It's a concept that's part of the way the euro and the Eurogroup functions," he said.

(Reporting By James Mackenzie)

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