Fra Financial Times:

Italy has promised a significant cut to its budget deficit target for 2019 as Rome bids to avoid sanctions from Brussels for breaching EU budget rules. Giuseppe Conte, Italy’s prime minister, said he would propose a government deficit of 2.04 per cent of gross domestic product, from a previous target of 2.4 per cent.

Following a meeting with European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels, Mr Conte said the move was possible because government policies including higher welfare payments and a lower retirement age would cost less than expected.