Martedì, 16 Ottobre 2018
ROME

Monti says Berlusconi comments 'not a threat'

English
© ANSA

Rome, October 29 - Italian Premier Mario Monti
shrugged off questions about ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's
threat to withdraw his support and the government's ruling
majority with it.
"The threats to withdraw confidence in this government can
not be made because we (the cabinet) do not experience them as a
threat. We were asked to make a contribution in a difficult
moment for this country. We can not call something a threat that
would take nothing away from us," said Mario Monti at a press
conference following a bilateral summit with Spanish Premier
Mariano Rajoy in Madrid on Monday.
Asked whether he thought Monday's rise in the Italian bond
spread was due to Berlusconi's threat, Monti responded, "I
hadn't thought about it. Now I will reflect on it".
The spread between interest rates on Italian and German
bonds is an important gauge of the market's confidence in
Italy's ability to pay down its enormous debt.
The higher the spread, the shakier Italy's perceived
prospects are, and the spread shot to 355 basis points during
trading on Monday, after having closed at 336 points on Friday.
Monti leads a technical - not elected - government that was
appointed last November to guide Italy through a time of
economic and political crisis.
Ex-premier Berlusconi gave Monti the support of his
centre-right People of Freedom Party (PdL). Without the PdL,
Monti could loose his parliament majority.
Berlusconi made his threat to withdraw support during a
Saturday press conference in which he protested his criminal
conviction for accounting fraud and tax evasion as an unjust
attack.

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