Berlusconi unveils Italy priorities

Italian road and building companies shares rise on hopes of renewed spending.

    Berlusconi is entering his third term
    as prime minister [AFP]
    The leader of the conservative People of Freedom party won a clear majority in both of Italy's houses of parliament on Monday and the result was warmly welcomed in certain areas of the economy.
     
    Construction gains
     
    In a research note, investment bank Abaxbank, said: "With the centre-right's election win... we believe that all shares linked to infrastructure and those in niche sectors with strong business talent will mostly end up having a strong advantage."
     
    Profile


    Silvio Berlusconi

    Impregilo, Italy's largest builder, was up 2.7 per cent by Tuesday morning.

    The company had headed a consortium to build the Sicily bridge under Berlusconi's 2001 to 2006 government but the outgoing centre-left government scrapped the plan.

    Construction company Astaldi also rose 2.46 per cent.
     
    Berlusconi counts cleaning up the Naples rubbish and rescuing Alitalia among his top domestic priorities.
     
    Naples clean-up
     
    Air France and KLM broke off talks aimed at taking over the cash strapped airline earlier this month.
     
    In a radio interview on Tuesday, Berlusconi promised to "be in Naples three days a week" to deal with the crisis.
     
    Election results indicated that he scored highly among Naples voters.
     
    Berlusconi vowed to co-operate with Italy's neighbours in "deporting non-EU citizens who are here and do not have work or a home and are forced into crime in order to live".
     
    With regard to Italy's foreign policy, Barbara Serra, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Rome, said: "Mr Berlusconi is a very flamboyant, international figure, very pro-American, he often stood shoulder to shoulder with George Bush [the US president].
     
    "Italy was in Iraq after the invasion, they have since withdrawn but have troops in Afghanistan. As a rule, Berlusconi has been with the US rather than Europe, whether he will continue to be we will have to wait and see."
     
    Italy's early election was called after the centre-left coalition government of Romano Prodi collapsed in January, having completed 20 months in power.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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