Monti insists Italy will not need cash from Germany

City A.M. Reporter
ITALY needs moral support from Germany but not its cash, Prime Minister Mario Monti said in an interview published yesterday as German conservatives renewed calls for Greece to leave the Eurozone.

The Italian leader also told weekly magazine Der Spiegel that he was concerned about growing anti-euro, anti-German and anti-European Union sentiment in the parliament in Rome.

The German government has resisted calls from Italy and struggling countries to introduce common Eurozone bonds or take other action to help alleviate the bloc’s sovereign debt crisis, saying it would remove pressure to enact painful reforms.

Yesterday, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative alliance, Bavaria’s finance minister Markus Soeder, said Greece would leave the Eurozone by the end of 2012.

“I’ll stay in office if all goes according to plan until April 2013, and I hope that I can help rescue Italy from financial ruin with moral support from some European friends, especially Germany,” Monti told Der Spiegel.

“But I say quite clearly: moral support, not financial,” he added. “I emphasise: not with financial help. But they should cut some slack to those countries that are following the European guidelines precisely.”

Monti pointed out that, while five Eurozone countries have received or requested international bailouts, Italy has not yet received “a single euro” of help.

“I’ve got the impression that the majority of Germans believe Italy has already received financial aid from Germany or the European Union – that’s not the case. Not a single euro.”