Italy's government said on Wednesday it had raised its 2013 goal for its budget deficit to 0.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) from a previous target of 0.1 percent.

Prime Minister Mario Monti said it would have a structural budget surplus, adjusted for the business cycle, of 0.6 percent of GDP in 2013.

The government said in a statement after a meeting on Wednesday that it had cut its GDP forecast for 2012 to -1.2 percent from a previous forecast of -0.4 percent.

It raised its growth forecast for 2013 to +0.5 percent from a previous target of +0.3 percent.

(Reporting By Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Catherine Hornby)