The First Days of Italy's New Prime Minister
Chiara Oldani, University of Viterbo and G7 Research Group
December 12, 2016
On December 11, 2016, Sergio Mattarella, president of the Republic of Italy, asked foreign minister Paolo Gentiloni to form a new government. In a very short acceptance speech, Gentiloni stated that his government, if appointed, would not last a few weeks, and would manage the consequences of the recent earthquakes.
Gentiloni has been a member of Parliament since 2001. He belongs to the Partito Democratico, same party as Matteo Renzi. A Catholic, he has noble ancestors.
Gentiloni was minister of communications from 2006 to 2008, in Romano Prodi's government. He has been the minister of foreign affairs in Renzi's government since Federica Mogherini left for Brussels in 2014. In office he has proved to be a good diplomat, facing complex situations such as the crisis produced when the Egyptian police tortured and killed Giulio Regeni, an Italian PhD student in labour economics at the University of Cambridge in February 2016. Gentiloni found a partial solution to the crisis with India after the (presumed) killing of two fishermen by two Italian navy seals in international waters of Kerala in 2012. He also facilitated the end of the Cuban embargo by the United States.
The first move of the Gentiloni's government will to rescue the Monte dei Paschi di Siena, which has been denied a delay by the European Central Bank, and needs a huge capital injection of around €3.5 billions. Second, it will prepare a new electoral law that would guarantee a majority in the election, especially in the Senate, after the Constitutional Court amends the current law.
After dealing with domestic issues, Gentiloni will host the G7 in Taormina, Sicily, in May 2017. In the coming weeks, as Italy assumes the presidency on January 1, he will provide more details on the agenda, but his personal experience will be valuable in this international meeting.
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Chiara Oldani is professor of monetary economics at the University of Viterbo and director of the G7 Research Group's Rome office. She is a member of the scientific committee of the Fondazione Ugo La Malfa, a research associate at the Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis at Australian National University and the director of research at the Rome-based Assonebb. She was a visiting scholar at CIGI in 2014, the Cambridge Endowment for Research in Finance at the University of Cambridge in 2007 and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 2005. She has taught at Luiss Guido Carli University and the Italian Society for International Organization in Rome. Chiara's research currently focuses on over-the-counter financial derivatives and the complex web of counterparty risk, widely considered a major precipitating factor of the global financial crisis. She has published dozens of academic papers and book chapters, both in English and Italian, on topics including Greek sovereign risk, derivatives and fiscal policy, and the global financial crisis. She has a Ph.D. in monetary and financial economics from Tor Vergata University and an M.Sc. in economics from the University of Warwick
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