May 28, 2018 / 1:11 PM / 21 days ago

German business relieved Italian eurosceptics not taking power

BERLIN (Reuters) - German businesses are relieved that eurosceptics are not taking power in Italy, the DIHK Chambers of Industries and Commerce said on Monday as Berlin said it hoped a stable government would be formed in Rome.

Anti-establishment forces abandoned their efforts to form a ruling coalition in Italy at the weekend after a standoff with President Sergio Mattarella, who vetoed their choice of a eurosceptic as economy minister.

Mattarella on Monday appointed a former International Monetary Fund official as interim prime minister with the task of planning for snap polls and passing the next budget.

Volker Treier, foreign trade chief at the DIHK, said the populist parties’ decision meant their “prohibitively expensive Italian coalition agreement” was off the table for now.

“That is a relief for German businesses,” he said, adding that Italy would overtake Britain this year as Germany’s fifth biggest trading partner.

In Berlin, a government spokesman stressed Germany’s respect for Italian democracy and political institutions and said Berlin hoped for a stable government in Italy. In Brussels, Germany’s Europe minister Michael Roth said Berlin hopes Italy will form a stable and pro-European government soon.

Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Alison Williams

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