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PRESS RELEASE


Italian Finance Committee Will Hold Hearings on Banking Separation

March 16, 2017 (EIRNS)—The Finance Committee of the Italian Chamber of Deputies started the discussion of the 12 draft bills on banking separation yesterday. Rapporteur Marco Di Maio (Democratic Party) made a synopsis of the bills, all of which, in one form or another, push for complete separation between investment and commercial banks. Then, Di Maio presented the various "reforms" and proposals introduced in the United States, in the United Kingdom, and in the European Union, from the Dodd-Frank Act, to the Liikanen proposal and the EU Commission fake separation scheme, giving support to opponents of strict separation.

He then concluded by proposing a round of hearings in order to help clarify the subject matter.

Deputy Alessio Villarosa (M5S) intervened by saying that the present discussion is of historical value, as, for the first time, an issue is being addressed, which the country has expected for years. Villarosa is in favor of hearings, but he said it is fundamental to know whether the rapporteur (the majority) is prejudicially against banking separation, or whether it was willing to have an open discussion.

Di Maio replied that his proposal to hold hearings is already evidence of willingness by the majority to discuss the issue. The definitive position of the majority will depend on the result of the investigation.

Pietro Laffranco (Forza Italia) said he was in favor of strict separation, as he had cosigned one of the draft bills, and he, too, requested a clear position from the majority, before organizing hearings that could be a waste of time.

Davide Zoggia (MDP) also demanded pre-emptive clarity and proposed to adopt a "basic text" before agreeing to have hearings.

Committee Chairman Maurizio Bernardo said that even a basic text could not be adopted before going deeper into the issue, and that hearings would aim at that.

The discussion was adjourned to a future date.

The large number of draft bills in the Chamber (and about the same number in the Senate) is a direct or indirect result of the years-long campaign by the LaRouche movement in Italy, whose milestone was the first bill introduced by Sen. Oskar Peterlini in 2012. At least four of the twelve draft bills have been directly influenced, or even co-drafted, by the LaRouche movement.