BARI, Italy May 13 Ministers and central
bankers from the Group of Seven rich countries did not discuss
the risk of trade protectionism, Italian Economy Minister Pier
Carlo Padoan said on Saturday.
Padoan told reporters at the end of the meeting that
"protectionism was not discussed either explicitly or
impicitly", in answer to a question about the scepticism of U.S.
President Donald Trump towards multilateral free trade deals.
Padoan added that "fragmentation in the system does not help
Separately, Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco said no one
at the G7 meeting had flagged potential risks linked to the
Italian political situation ahead of national elections
scheduled to take place in 2018.
"No one flagged possible tensions due to what happens in our
country," Visco said, adding the meeting did not discuss the
state of health of Italian banks, which are saddled with some
350 billion euros of soured loans.
(Reporting By Gavin Jones and Silvia Aloisi)