Italy government

Can the “super” Mario Draghi rebuild the Italian government?

The economist nicknamed “Super Mario” after saving the euro has agreed to form a new unity government tasked with keeping Italy afloat during the coronavirus pandemic.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella summoned Mario Draghi for talks today, after the ruling coalition collapsed earlier this month when former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi withdrew support from his Italia Viva party.

Who is the “super” new leader?

Draghi is an economist and central banker who served as President of the European Central Bank (ECB) from 2011 to 2019. He had previously held a series of high-level economic posts in Italy, including a six-year term as Governor of the Bank of Italy. from 2005.

As head of the ECB, Draghi “helped calm markets and avert a collapse of the euro” in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crash, pledging to do “whatever it takes” to save the euro. EU currency, The temperature reports.

However, “he has largely disappeared from the public eye since the end of his term at the ECB”, says The telegraphand unlike other figures vying for political power, is not tarnished by the infighting that has dogged the Italian government during the pandemic response.

Given his pristine reputation, Draghi should be a popular choice among voters to lead a new coalition.

The New York Times (NYT) notes that until he met Mattarella today, the idea of ​​Draghi taking the reins “remained a pipe dream for many Italians frustrated by a coalition government that seemed crippled by ideological schisms and incompetence. “.

Upcoming challenges

Although a valued and respected figure on the Italian political scene, Draghi will inherit a series of challenges that will require quick and effective action.

As Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte is set to leave the stage, speculation is mounting as to whether the new coalition will be made up of figures from the “parties supporting Draghi, or a star cast of economists, judges and politically unaffiliated scientists,” the NYT says.

The new leader will also have to master “the health, economic and political troubles which are shaking Italy”, adds The Telegraph.

Italy’s economy has plunged during the pandemic, with figures recently released by national statistics office Istat revealing that the country’s GDP fell 8.8% in 2020 – the biggest annual drop since World War II.

Draghi is “no political novice” and has overcome a series of major hurdles during his long career, according to the NYT.

Yet Conte also “proved to be a shrewd operator but ultimately could not survive Rome’s eternal political machinations,” the Times adds.