Italy can help Franco-German ties if Hollande wins: Monti
(ROME) - Italy can help France and Germany find "a new equilibrium" if Socialist frontrunner Francois Hollande wins the French presidential election on Sunday, Prime Minister Mario Monti said Wednesday.
"We have become more pressing and, I hope, more persuasive in a European context," Monti said at a debate with former World Bank economist Joseph Stiglitz in Rome hosted by a centre-left think tank.
"What could happen in France would be a very important factor," he said.
"I think Italy has placed itself in a good position to help France and Germany find a new equilibrium if it comes to that," he added.
Hollande has said it would be possible to renegotiate a eurozone fiscal pact to include growth measures despite the misgivings of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has stressed that the pact is not up for debate.
Merkel is supporting Hollande's rival Nicolas Sarkozy in the election.
Italian daily La Repubblica this week reported on plans for the Italian and German parliaments to ratify the fiscal compact simultaneously in a symbolic gesture aimed at emphasising close ties between the two countries.
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