What the Italian Election Means for the EU

Author (Person)
Series Title
Series Details April 2018
Publication Date 18/04/2018
Content Type

Background information

+ Results of the Italian general election, 4 March 2018
+ Coalition talks for government following 2018 Italian General Election
+ Five Star Movement and Northern League reach an agreement to break political deadlock after Italian General election
+ Italian political crisis continues after President of the Republic Mattarella refuses eurosceptic Economy Minister

The results of the Italian general election 2018 showed that no single party reached a governing majority.

The Five-star movement gained most votes (31.34%), followed by the Northern League (18.36%). However, the Centre-Right coalition, which included Northern League, Go Italy (13.4%), Brothers of Italy (4.23%) and the smaller party Us with Italy UDC (1.19%), reached 37% of votes.

The Left failed in the election: Free and Equals gained 3.5% of votes, while the Democratic Party only reached 19.86%. Its leader and a previous Prime Minister Matteo Renzi resigned.

A possible solution to the absence of a majority was a broad coalition.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella instigated a protracted period of negotiations with party leaders to find a workable solution.

The two populist and somewhat Eurosceptic parties Five Star Movement and Northern League reached an agreement about a new coalition government on the 13 May 2018. According to a draft of their programme they would seek:

+ to ask the European Central Bank to forgive €250 billion of Italian debt
+ a renegotiation of Italy’s European Union budget contributions
+ an end to sanctions against Russia
+ plans to dismantle a 2011 pension reform that raised the retirement age
+ tax cuts and increased public spending

On 23 May 2018, President Mattarella approved Professor Giuseppe Conte as the new Prime Minister, giving him the mandate to form a government.

On 27 May 2018, President Mattarella refused to accept the nomination of eurosceptic Paolo Savona as Economy Minister proposed by Giuseppe Conte. This led Prime Minister-designate led Conte to resign and opened again the governmental crisis in Italy.
The next few years will be crucial for Italian and European politics. If the chance to reform eurozone governance is missed, and the EU does not do more to convince Italians that the EU benefits them, there is a risk that disillusionment with the bloc will continue to fester in the eurozone’s third-largest economy. If that should happen, Italy will increasingly become a spoiler, and when the next economic crisis hits, Italians will become more eurosceptic – to the extent that leaving the euro or the EU would no longer appear unthinkable.

Source Link http://cer.eu/insights/what-italian-election-means-eu
Related Link(s)
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