Italy: 100 days of Giorgia Meloni as PM

When right-wing populist Giorgia Meloni became Italian prime minister Europe sounded the alarm. After more than 100 days in office she appears to many as rather pragmatic and reserved. Commentators take stock.

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The Spectator (GB) /

Looking set to complete mandate

The gloomy predictions of conflicts with the EU have not been fulfilled, notes The Spectator:

“In January EU President Ursula von der Leyen flew to Rome to meet Meloni for a perfectly cordial encounter. She is on good terms with both French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz who she met yesterday for their first one to one meeting in Berlin at which she repeated her unequivocal support for arms to Ukraine and sanctions on Russia. ... Unlike most Italian governments Meloni's looks well set to complete its five-year mandate. ... You could not have thought such a state of affairs would be even remotely possible if you had paid heed to what the global media were telling us 100 days ago.”

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (DE) /

Vague and contradictory economic policies

Christian Schubert, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung's business correspondent in Rome, says this is not what good governance looks like:

“Italy's major structural challenges need answers that are backed by a well thought-out, coherent concept. This has been lacking so far. The economic policy strategies of the government, which includes three parties from the right to the centre-right, are still rather vague and contain contradictory elements such as entrepreneurial freedoms but also state control to preserve the sacrosanct 'Made in Italy' slogan. One problem is that many of the so-called sovereignists in the Meloni camp fundamentally distrust the market because they fear a loss of control because of it.”

Il Manifesto (IT) /

Following Draghi's lead

You can't assess the performance of a government that hasn't actually done anything yet, Il Manifesto comments:

“Sure, there are extenuating circumstances for inaction. It's the first government to see the light of day in the autumn, with the budget breathing down its neck and reduced room for manoeuvre on this front too. But a glimmer, a landmark decision, a bold move would still have been possible. Instead, the Meloni government has chosen to play second fiddle on the only relevant law [the budget] to date. She has slavishly followed in the footsteps of Mario Draghi - and obeyed his polite instructions.”