Skip to Content

Matteo Salvini
Rome

Italian anti-euro party looking strong as coalition talks gain momentum

The party of Matteo Salvini is in pre-election talks with Silvio Berlusconi about forming a coalition, in what may become a nightmare for the European Union leadership.

Published: January 6, 2018, 9:20 am

    Read more

    Polls show that such a coalition would garner 40 percent of the vote, enough to secure a win in the coming March elections.

    Salvini from the Lega Nord, or Lega, has held a series of talks with the country’s four-time prime minister in a bid to cement their centre-right partnership. They have discussed key policies according to Italian media reports, which include reducing taxes, creating jobs and fighting illegal immigration.

    Salvini has said the bloc needed to change or it would “cease to exist”, adding that Brussels should stop meddling in member state’s affairs.

    Lega Nord has questioned the use of the euro, with Salvini claiming the currency is a failed experiment that is heading towards “catastrophe”. His rising popularity has caused panic in Brussels.

    Last year already Salvini warned: “I believe that one single currency for 18 economies, each different in its own way, that just won’t work in the long term. But statistics here is more important than anything else.

    “Look, since the introduction of the common currency Italy’s debt has risen by €900billion.”

    The Greek economy, which has the same problems, is not large enough to be a major annoyance to the other European economies. But with Italy’s debt, Europe would not be able to cope with a similar scenario.

    Salvini said economic experts agreed with his statements. “Six Nobel Prize winners are unanimous in saying that this experiment has failed and we should not go any further down this road.

    “Yes, we understand that there is no way to hold a referendum on the euro. But we are determined to become part of the government and that is why we invited economists to figure out what we should do when the euro collapses, since we should not rule out this possibility, what to do to prevent a catastrophe.”

    Both Italy and Greece are held back by the fiscal constraints that the euro’s rules impose. Neither have generated sufficient growth, and the only alternatives looming are a restructuring of debt or an exit from the common currency.

    The Italian economy is simply too large compared to the eurozone one for a rescue of the Greek type to be possible. According to Forbes magazine, analysis points out that with the various cross guarantees of debts within the eurozone, an Italian default would make French finances extremely shaky, that in turn could even spread to German banks.

    Lega Nord has vowed to honour last October’s referendum to grant greater autonomy for the wealthy Lombardy and Veneto regions, which is yet another source of potential conflict with the EU.

    Both regions, which include Venice and Milan, overwhelmingly backed more independence from Rome. It is expected that Berlusconi and Salvini will hold another meeting in the coming days in a bid to make further progress on these issues too.

    “There are still no appointments set with the allies, today I will call Silvio Berlusconi and then we will see in the coming days,” Salvini told the media.

    Officials in Lazio and Lombardy have agreed to hold their regional elections on the same day as the March 4 general elections, sources said Friday.

    Governors Nicola Zingaretti and Roberto Maroni have asked the interior ministry to manage the respective regional elections, the sources said.

    Earlier The prefect of Milan, Luciana Lamorgese, was said to be ready to sign a measure calling regional elections in Lombardy for March 4, the same date as the general election, thus creating what Italians call an ‘Election Day’.

    The general election will take place on a single day, Sunday March 4, from 07:00 to 23:00. The polls will not stay open as they have in the past on Monday morning, Italian news agency ANSA reported.

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Is Yulia Skripal a hostage of the British government?

    LondonYulia Skripal, the daughter of a former Russian spy, is alive, but has leveled no accusations at Russia for her alleged poisoning in the Skripal affair. She appeared on camera with a fresh scar on her throat from a trachea cut.

    Marine rips into Macron’s failed policies in live interview

    ParisMarine Le Pen, leader of the Front National, was a guest on the political talk show on French television where she ripped into unpopular President Macron's failing policies.

    Scandal shakes German refugee authority: Cash for asylum

    More than 25 000 asylum cases will have to be re-processed after Germany's Federal Office for Refugees and Migration (BAMF) became mired in a corruption scandal at its regional office in the northern city of Bremen.

    Britain’s claims about Skripal affair ‘precarious’ says German media

    BerlinGerman intelligence already had a sample of the nerve agent used to poison the Skripals in the United Kingdom at least two decades ago. And so did the US and Britain.

    Crisis brewing in ‘parking lot for migrants’

    Some 120 000 migrants are currently heading towards Croatia, en route to enter the European Union via the popular Western Balkan route. Croatian police have been put on alert.

    US newspaper urges Ukraine to bomb Kerch Strait bridge

    As Russian President Vladimir Putin opened the Kerch Strait Bridge connecting Crimea with mainland Russia on Tuesday, an opinion piece in an American newspaper urged Ukraine to bomb the bridge.

    Large EU firms are pulling out of Iran

    Major European firms have started to pull out of Iran to avoid being hit by harsh US sanctions despite tough talk by EU leaders.

    Leaked Italian manifesto suggest lifting of anti-Russian sanctions

    RomeIn a leaked manifesto, entitled Government for Change, calls for sanctions against Russia to be scrapped in Italy have been revealed. If this happens, Germany and France, could soon follow suit.

    Hungary and Poland stand firm against EU’s immigration plans

    WarsawAt the beginning of this month, 58 European and African countries gathered in Morocco in Marrakech to discuss issues such as migration and development. The EU plans to support immigration to Europe, not to stop it.

    Italy inching towards forming new government

    Leader of Italy's 5-Star Movement (M5S), Luigi Di Maio said that a fresh meeting with League chief Matteo Salvini on the formation of a new government went well on Friday.

    Go to archive