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28-Nov-14 14:00. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (143)

Bad weather hits food production in Italy

The exceptional bad weather of this year caused a decrease in made in Italy food production accounting for 35 percent less for olive oil, 15 percent less for wine and 4 percent of wheat for the pasta. Also the picking of fruit and vegetables decreased under the effects of bad weather. According to Coldiretti the damage to the agricultural sector accounts for 2.5 billion considering the production decrees and increase of expenses for the protection of the cultivations. Grape harvest in particular is most likely to be classified as the poorest since 1950, with a production of Italian wine that could drop down by 41 million hectolitres. The Italian production of olive oil has collapsed by 300 thousand tons.

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28-Nov-14 13:58. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (136)

Mass protest against Matteo Renzi's labour market reform

More than one million people protested in Rome against Matteo Renzi’s labour market reform. CGIL, the largest union organised the rally to protest against the new regulations which weaken labour protection and make it easier for firms to dismiss workers. According to ISTAT the unemployment rate amongst 15-24 year olds has reached in Italy 44.2 %, almost doubling the German rate. Italy is the fourth country (after Czech republic, Slovakia and Greece) in the OECD for making use of “fake self employment business collaborations”. In this case workers have to clock in and clock out but are not employed by the company, and are considered freelance workers without holidays, sickness coverage and maternity leave, etc.

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31-Oct-14 13:41. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (162)

Italian divorce scam in the UK

A new fraud “Italian style” has been reported by “The Financial times” and all the main newspapers in the UK and in Italy. 180 divorce cases have been overturned, in what have been defined as a “conspiracy to pervert the course of justice on an almost industrial scale”. Italians know how long and painful is the way to divorce in their country. Couples in Italy must undergo a three-year legal separation but if they are habitually resident in another EU country, such as the UK, they can divorce in a much shorter time.

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31-Oct-14 13:38. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (105)

Matera - the new European capital of culture

Matera is the European capital of culture. The City, shortlisted with Ravenna, Cagliari, Lecce, Perugia and Siena won the title with 7 votes out of 13. Matera is the first city in the South of Italy to be awarded the title after the other Italian cities in the centre and north, Firenze in 1986 and Genoa in 2008. The European capital of culture was created in 1985 to promote the EU member state’s historical cultural and artistic awareness. The title is assigned every year to two member states. In 2019, the other European capital of culture will be Plovdiv in Bulgaria.

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09-Oct-14 15:56. By | Comments (243)

Parma airport to close?

Italy's La Repubblica newspaper says the Northern Italian airport could be forced to close its doors should airport management fail to find a suitable partner before a shareholders meeting on October 14. The paper claims that despite the town hall's best efforts to find investment, the prospect of doing so is rather bleak at this point in time.

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09-Oct-14 15:50. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (60)

Fake Brunello di Montalcino discovered

Imagine you came back home from work, you’ve been looking forward to sip a glass of Brunello di Montalcino all day. You pour it into a glass and… it doesn’t taste as good as it should! It would be terrible wouldn’t it? Luckily it won’t happen for real as the Italian finance police confiscated the equivalent of more than 220,000 bottles of fake Brunello and Rosso di Montalcino, before it was bottled for ageing and put on the market.

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19-Sep-14 15:53. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (16)

Facebook campaign to try to recall Padre Carmelo to St Peter's

After the announcement a few days ago that Padre Carmelo Di Giovanni will be transferred to Rome on Friday 19th September 2014, Giuseppe di Tano, tenor in the choir of St Peter’s church, and active member of the Italian community, is collecting signatures to have Padre Carmelo’s transfer revoked. 340 signatures have already been collected and a Facebook campaign has been organised to collect signatures in the hope that Padre Carmelo will return to London.

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19-Sep-14 15:48. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Padre Carmelo transferred to Rome

After 43 years as priest of St. Peter’s Church Padre Carmelo Di Giovanni has been transferred to Rome. The news was given a few days ago by Carmelo himself at the 11am mass. Since then many people came to say goodbye to Padre Carmelo even from far outside London. The London Italian community is bewildered and has shown deep affection and solidarity to Padre Carmelo, the parish of an “explosive church”, full of activities and always open to everyone. Gradually Padre Carmelo became a reference point for the Italian community and even nowadays Padre Carmelo has been always ready to help the new wave of Italian immigration, the so called “cervelli in fuga”, young professionals coming to London to find a better job.

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19-Sep-14 15:47. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (30)

17 year old Davide Bifolco shot dead by a Carabiniere - violent demonstrations follow

A few days ago, 17-year-old Davide Bifolco was shot dead by a Carabiniere in Naples. The boy was on a scooter with two other people and didn’t stop at the police block, so the carabinieri went after them. The Carabinieri have declared they were there to arrest a fugitive. One of the other boys on the scooter said they didn’t stop because the scooter wasn’t insured. The Traioano neighbourhood, the area in Naples were the tragic event took place, reacted with a violent demonstration, setting fire to police cars. As “Repubblica” reported, “The state doesn’t protect us but kills us. Let’s defend ourselves!” was written on a banner.

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01-Aug-14 13:58. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (4)

Cost of living rises in Italy but bills remain amongst the lowest in Europe

According to a study by “Cgia” the expenditure for bills in Italy has undergone a crazy increase. Over the past 10 years, rates of key public services have registered a record increase. Water, for example, increased by 85.2%. Waste rose by 81.8%. The motorway toll costs were up by 50.1%. In the case of urban transport, the trend was similar: 49.6%. The complaint comes from the Cgia, the association of craftsmen in Mestre. Among the ten items considered in this analysis, only the phone services have undergone a decrease in prices: -15.9%. However, during the period considered, inflation increased by 23.1%. In spite of the liberalization that took place in recent decades, which have affected most of these areas, the results obtained were not very satisfactory. Broadly speaking Italians were asked to pay more, but the quality of services didn’t undergo major improvements. However, despite the strong increases the bill rates remain the lowest in Europe.

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