Chapter 7 The Italian predicament
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Chapter 7 shifts the focus to Italy, often referred to as “the sick man in Europe” because of its huge debt (and because it has repeatedly faced or been threatened with an excessive deficit procedure). Indeed, Italy was the first country to be threatened also with a debt-based excessive deficit procedure. The Italian predicament has been scarcely examined in previous literature because the country has never gone so far as to request financial assistance; however, as this chapter reveals, it raises important issues that are certain to be of interest to a broader readership.

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