Giorgia Meloni plays it moderate in Brussels

On her first trip abroad as Italian Prime Minister, Giorgia Meloni visited Brussels. When she was leader of the opposition she focused on confrontation with the EU, but now she has announced that her country wants to play a greater role in Europe. What to make of these moderate tones?

Open/close all quotes
La Repubblica (IT) /

No big deal for the EU

The fact that Meloni's first trip was to Brussels is significant for La Repubblica:

“It is a symbolic yet important gesture because it is indicative of a political priority. She didn't travel to Kyiv, where she had also been invited. She didn't travel to Warsaw, where her Eurosceptic party comrades are in power. ... From the EU's point of view, the Meloni problem is actually quite simple and was unequivocally explained to the prime minister yesterday. If the new government sticks to the reform and budgetary commitments made by the Draghi government in order to receive European funds, and if it doesn't let the protection of the rule of law slip, as its friends in Hungary and Poland have done, everything will go smoothly.”

De Morgen (BE) /

Being hostile to the EU doesn't pay off

De Morgen looks at why Meloni is presenting herself as moderate in Brussels:

“Apart from pure political pragmatism, there is another, perhaps even more critical reason why Meloni is now adopting a more moderate tone in Brussels: she simply cannot afford to offend European leaders. Just as in Belgium, Italy's growing national debt and budget deficit are soaring. ... And with a looming recession in the background, Italy needs all the European aid it can get. That help will come. With a package of 200 billion euros, the country is the biggest recipient of the European Covid recovery fund.”