Italy’s Meloni urges allies to unite
October 24, 2022 - Brussels views Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s cabinet appointments as a sign that she is seeking to appease concerns about the direction of the eurozone’s third-largest economy.
Meloni, 45, the leader of the far-right Brothers of Italy party, formally took over from Mario Draghi as head of government on Sunday (October 23).
Tensions within Meloni’s coalition have already rocked the new government, which includes Matteo Salvini’s far-right League party and former premier Silvio Berlusconi’s right-wing Forza Italia.
Meloni restated her plans to uphold Italy’s pro-NATO stance and Western sanctions against Russia after Berlusconi defended President Vladimir Putin as the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine enters its ninth month.
“We must be united, there are emergencies the country is facing. We have to work together,” Meloni told her 24 cabinet ministers during their first meeting, lasting half an hour.
Meloni’s government will use its ability to block the foreign acquisition of Italian companies, known as “golden power,” Guido Crosetto, named Defence Minister, said in an interview with Repubblica on Sunday. The Draghi administration blocked numerous Chinese attempts to acquire Italian strategic assets.
Prime Minister Meloni will provide more details on her government’s plans on Tuesday when she addresses the Lower House ahead of a confidence vote expected to complete the formation of a new government. A similar one will follow the vote in the Senate.
The League’s Salvini and Antonio Tajani of Forza Italia were named Infrastructure Minister and Foreign Minister, respectively -- both will be deputy premiers.