Thursday, August 13, 2009

Italy's hopeless South

Southern Italy's ills

The messy mezzogiorno

Aug 13th 2009 | ROME
From The Economist print edition

A political row brings new attention to Italy’s neglected, but still troubled, south

THERE was a time when the problems of the Italian south, the mezzogiorno, seemed urgent not just for Italy but for all of Europe. Then new members with even poorer regions joined the European Union and the issue slipped off the agenda in Brussels and Rome. Silvio Berlusconi’s government does not even have a minister for the mezzogiorno—the peninsular south, plus Sicily and Sardinia. Yet the region’s problems have not gone away. It matters: the south accounts for a third of Italy’s population, half its unemployment and an immeasurable share of organised crime. Now the south is again a hot political issue, with more recent news coverage even than the prime minister’s sex scandals. Read the whole story here…..

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