Monti silent on plans for second term
ITALIAN Prime Minister Mario Monti said his time in government was limited as he responded to growing calls from some of the country's top executives and politicians to serve another term.
"The experience of a caretaker government is definitely episodic, transitory and limited in time," Mr Monti said at the Ambrosetti Forum, a meeting of bankers, corporate leaders and policy makers on the shores of Lake Como in northern Italy.
Voters needed to restore their faith in Italy's politicians, said the 69-year-old former university president.
That wasn't necessarily what the assembled entrepreneurs and chief executive officers wanted to hear. About four-fifths of those surveyed by newspaper 'Sole 24 Ore Radiocor' before the conference said they hoped Mr Monti would be reappointed following parliamentary elections to take place by April.
The so-called "Monti encore" was backed publicly by Intesa Sanpaolo boss Enrico Cucchiani. Mr Monti declined to comment when asked by reporters if he would accept a second mandate.
The Italian prime minister burnished his credentials with bankers and business leaders since his November appointment by reversing a slide in Italian bonds and curbing speculation the government would need rescue funds from Europe.
He imposed austerity to reduce the budget deficit at home and strengthened ties with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a push for collective action to fight contagion from the sovereign debt crisis.
Italy had no plans to apply for European aid, Mr Monti's finance minister Vittorio Grilli told reporters. (Bloomberg)