An Italian Politician Says That His Country Only Works Nine Months A Year On Average

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Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Gianfranco Polillo, a junior economy minister in Mario Monti’s Italian government, says by his calculations Italian workers only work nine months of the year — and should work a week more a year to improve the country’s GDP.Polillio made the (somewhat controversial) statements 

“We are in a country where you work an average of nine months each year, and I think that now we must think that these nine months of work are too short,” Polilio said in an interview with La Repubblica. “If we gave up our one week vacation we would have an immediate impact on GDP of around 1%.”

Such a move would go a part of the way towards balancing Italy’s current account deficit, he argues.

We’re not too sure about Polillio’s calculations (he says he divided the number of hours worked by the number of workers, which seems to lack detail — what about part time workers?), but his point is likely to rile many Italians. Last year, Alex Roe of Italian Chronicles reasoned that the cost of politicians in Italy seemed exorbitantly high when compared internationally — perhaps partially due to their extravagent (and taxpayer subsidized) meals in the Senate, where a steak costs just $3.80.

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