Italy invests a billion euros to boost its birthrate


Southern Europe


The Italian Prime Minister Meloni (left) with her daughter Ginevra visiting Pope Francis. Both Meloni and Pope Francis are concerned about the demographic decline of Italy. Photo EPA

The Italian government urgently needs to increase the birthrate in the country. Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has promised financial measures to make having children more attractive.

A billion euros are to stimulate couples to have more children, Euractiv reports. Working women are to get extra financial aid if they have two or more children. In addition, the Italian government wants to extend optional parental leave and increase the daycare fund. The last measure is only for the second child or those who come after that.

Meloni said that the measures signal that “a woman who gives birth to at least two children has already made an important contribution to society.” Therefore, she argued, the state partly compensates this by “paying social security contributions.” Meloni wants to change the attitude towards motherhood, she added, as reported by AP News. According to the Prime Minister, children are not an obstacle to work. “We want to incentivise those who give birth to children and want to work.”

Italy is one of the countries that is affected most severely by a population decline. Last year, only 393,000 babies were born in the Southern European country, Euractiv writes. In addition, the female share of the population continues to age, and the average woman in Italy does not get her first child before she has turned 32 years old. Between 1964 and 2020, the birth rate fell from 2.66 to 1.24 children per woman.

According to Meloni, the government has demography as one of its top priorities. She speaks of a “great battle to defend families, identity, God and all the things that have built our civilisation.”



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