09.01.2018 | Italy on brink of crisis? March elections could trigger political bombshell in EU state
Source - The Daily Express

Italy is set to hold elections in March to select its next Prime Minister after a series of unelected governments ruled for five years. Mr Calenda warned that eurosceptic 5 Star Movement (M5S) was "deluding" Italians with promises of tax cuts. The former Ferrari manager said: "If we take seriously what they are promising today this will lead to a very dangerous situation in terms of financial stability. "And they will, in a very short period of time, cancel all progress we made the past few years." Polls ahead of the Spring vote put a right-wing coalition headed by former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in the lead with about 34 percent of the vote, followed by M5S at 27 percent and governing Democratic Party (PD) in the low 20s. Mr Calenda claimed political uncertainty could undermine EU member state's position on the international market, further hindering an already precarious economic situation. Speaking to Bloomberg, the Italian politician continued: "The image that we will give is that we are no longer ready to face the challenge coming from the reality of our financial situations, and I guess that for the markets this will be a very dangerous approach. "This will give us less access to the markets and will bring a lot of entrepreneurs, foreign entrepreneurs, that want to invest in Italy to reconsider investment." Mr Berlusconi, a four-time prime minister who was unceremoniously kicked out of office for tax fraud, is revelling in his return to the stage. The billionaire media tycoon was widely written off after he quit as prime minister in 2011 amid a sex scandal, but he has made a remarkable political comeback. The former PM has said if his bloc took power he would like to see 12 people from outside the world of politics appointed to the cabinet, with only eight ministries entrusted to elected politicians. His allies, the far-right Northern League and Brothers of Italy, are likely to baulk at the suggestion. The three parties have agreed that whichever group gets more votes next year should nominate the prime minister.

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