The Italian Council of Ministers has announced the introduction of a tax in 2023 that will tax 40% of the extraordinary profits recorded by the country’s banks, the proceeds of which will be used to help those with mortgages and to reduce the tax burden on citizens.

“The Council of Ministers approved a social equity rule that is a tax on extra bank profits in 2023,” the Vice President of the Italian Government and Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, Matteo Salvini, announced at a press conference.

In this sense, the minister indicated that all the income from the new tax will go to aid for the first home mortgages and tax cuts.

In his presentation, Salvini defended the introduction of the extraordinary tax on banks because the rise in interest rates as a result of the tightening of the monetary policy of the European Central Bank (ECB) has led to an increase in the cost of money for families and companies, “But there hasn’t been as fast, as diligent and as significant a rise in consumers holding checking account deposits.”

Without wanting to assess the potential collection of the tax, the Italian minister indicated that “it is enough to look at the first half of 2023 of the banks” to understand that we are not talking about a handful of millions, but a few billion.

Subsequently, in a message posted on his account on the social network X, formerly known as Twitter, Salvini has assured that the new tax intends to “use part of the million-dollar profits from the banks to help families and companies affected by the rise in guys”.

“A common sense standard approved by the Council of Ministers to support those who are in difficulty,” he added.

According to Italian media, the rule, included by surprise in the omnibus decree approved at the meeting of the Council of Ministers held late this Monday, contemplates the activation of the 40% tax when the interest margin registered in 2023 exceeds a percentage.

The approval of the new tax on banks weighed down on Tuesday the price of the sector at the opening of the Milan Stock Exchange, with a fall in the titles of Bper (-7.39%), Banco Bpm (-6.73%), Intesa Sanpaolo (-7.17%), Unicredit (-5.68%), Mps (-6.75%)%, Mediolanum (-3.04%) and Mediobanca (1.64%).