ROME, Aug. 20 (Xinhua) -- The end of the economic crisis is in sight, and it depends on the government's ability to carry out its reform programs, Italy's Economic Development Minister Corrado Passera said on Monday.
"Our main problem is (the lack of) competitiveness and growth, in a word productivity," Passera said at a meeting held in the city of Rimini in central Italy. Such problem resulted from decades of bad policies, he added.
High taxation is also a deadweight to the economy that "must be rectified," he said, adding that "honest" citizens needed tax breaks and more resources for welfare.
However, Italy can now see an end of the economic crisis if the government is able to carry out its ambitious austerity program and growth measures, Passera said.
The recession-hit country, whose public debt accounts for over 120 percent of GDP, is struggling amid a series of tough austerity measures to avoid external help.
According to official estimates, the black economy in Italy accounts for 16.3 to 17.5 percent of the country's GDP.
"Imagine what kind of country Italy could and should be if we only recovered a part of the tax evasion," Passera said.
Social cohesion must also play a fundamental role in the recovery from the crisis, the minister said.
According to a government report released on Monday, 2.76 million criminal acts were registered in 2011, compared to 2.62 million in 2010, while pickpocketing was also up last year, with 134,000 cases reported nationwide.
The economic crisis could be fueling offenses such as home burglaries, which increased by 21 percent to 205,000, the report said. Enditem