NFollowing the offer of resignation by Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, many Italian business and professional associations have called on the head of government to stay. The front ranges from the banks to the steel manufacturers as well as the construction companies and agriculture. They fear a political and economic blockade in the country, which could also jeopardize the billions in transfers from the EU Commission from the European reconstruction plan. They are also concerned about the rising number of Covid-19. Politicians must “do everything in their power to protect the country from the serious dangers that are looming,” demanded the Federfarma pharmacists’ association, for example.
Draghi had offered his resignation on Thursday evening because the left-wing governing party Five Stars refused to support him. Italian President Sergio Mattarella declined to resign. He demanded that Draghi declare himself on Wednesday in Parliament. The question of whether Draghi wants to continue is still open. The majority of the five-star party indicated no yielding on Sunday.
Will there be new elections?
The Prime Minister took over the government in February 2021 on the condition that he was backed by a broad coalition of parties from right to left. One consequence of his resignation is likely to be early elections at the beginning of October, which will throw the country into new uncertainty. The economy fears that. Support also comes from the ranks of top managers, who are otherwise reluctant to express themselves politically, for example from the CEO of the supermarket chain Conad, Francesco Pugliese, as well as from Diego Della Valle from the shoe manufacturer Tod’s and from the head of the financial group Unipol, Carlo Cimbri.
Interest groups and associations, which had previously at times been critical of his policies, joined the chorus of Draghi supporters. A striking number of representatives of the health sector are among them, such as doctors and nurses and representatives of the thermal baths. Draghi has also garnered a lot of respect for successfully pushing ahead with the vaccination campaign last year with the help of General Francesco Figliuolo, who he appointed. “We cannot afford a crisis now. On behalf of the women and men of the health and social care professions, we make a heartfelt appeal for unity and responsibility to President Draghi, Minister of Health Speranza and all political and social forces.”
Truck drivers, freight forwarders and logistics companies also made a common demand for “responsible action” from politicians. Local employers’ associations from the Puglia region, Romagna and Lombardy joined. At the national level, the president of the Confindustria employers’ association, Carlo Bonomi, had previously accused the five-star party of “total irresponsibility that leaves us speechless”.