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Italy's Parliament Approves New Law Giving Regions More Powers

19.06.2024 14:27

Bill already won approval from Senate, passed by Lower House by 172 99 vote and now becomes effective law Law gives regions greater control over key public services such as health and education and more say over taxes Reform faces strong criticism from center left opposition, which argues that...

Italy's parliament on Wednesday gave the final go-ahead to a controversial reform allowing regions to have more powers, a move critics say could widen the historic divide between the country's wealthy north and poorer south.

The bill, which had already won approval from the Senate, was passed by the Lower House by a 172-99 vote and now becomes an effective law.

The law gives regions greater control over key public services such as health and education and more say over taxes.

During the vote, opposition parties protested by raising the Italian flag and chanting the national anthem.

Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini praised the parliament for passing the law, a flagship proposal of her ruling coalition League party, calling it a "historic step" for the country.

However, the reform faces strong criticism from the center-left opposition, which argues that it risks further widening the wealth gap between the north and the south, an issue that has plagued Italy since its unification in 1861.

Right-wing ruled Lombardy and Veneto, as well as left-leaning Emilia-Romagna, are among the northern regions expected to use the new law to gain more autonomy from Rome.​​​​​​​ -

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