The past few days has seen the Euro being weighed upon by political uncertainty from across the Atlantic but it is in Italy where the biggest strife has been created.
Embattled Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta is battling to save his fragile coalition government from collapse after Silvio Berlusconi ordered his party’s ministers to leave the coalition in a bid to bring down Letta and force snap elections. The cause of the dispute is the holding of a special committee meeting on October 4th which is expected to vote in favour of stripping the 76-year old Berlusconi of his seat in the upper house of parliament. Berlusconi had also complained over a proposed rise in VAT.
In a do or die speech Letta told Italy’s senate that the fall of his government could have dire and fatal consequences for the country. He defended his government’s record since taking power five months ago following a period of political deadlock. He also outlined his vision for Italy, one that must focus on growth and jobs.
He said: “Give us your confidence to realise our objectives. Give us your confidence for all that has been accomplished… a confidence vote for Italy and Italians.”
Berlusconi’s plan seems to be failing after his deputy Angelino Alfano broke with his boss and told MPs of the Berlusconi’s PDL party that they should back Letta.
“I am firmly convinced that our party as a whole should vote confidence in Letta” said Mr Alfano. Other PDL members came out to support Letta and the government suggesting that Berlusconi is likely to lose in his gamble to bring down the government.
In a surprise move it seems that Berlusconi will also choose to back the government in an effort to avoid humiliation for the failure of his gamble. If true and if Letta does win the vote Berlusconi is likely to remain a threat to the coalition.
Letta needs 161 votes in the Senate but can only count on the support of about 137 members, meaning he will need 25 votes from others. The vote will be held at midday.
Euro (EUR) Exchange Rates
As of 11:00 am
The Euro/US Dollar Exchange Rate is currently in the region of: 1.3533
The Euro/Pound Sterling Exchange Rate is currently in the region of: 0.8351
The Euro/Australian Dollar Exchange Rate is currently in the region of: 1.4487
The Euro/ New Zealand Dollar Exchange Rate is currently in the region of: 1.6475
The Euro/ Canadian Dollar Exchange Rate is currently in the region of: 1.4002