Italian PM Giuseppe Conte names Five Star Movement leader Luigi Di Maio as foreign minister and Roberto Gualtieri as finance minister in a new crisis-busting government that will be sworn in on Thursday.

Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte speaks at Rome's Quirinale Presidential Palace, Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte speaks at Rome's Quirinale Presidential Palace, Wednesday, September 4, 2019. (AP)

Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte on Wednesday formed a new government, a coalition of the populist Five Star Movement and left-leaning Democrats, which shut out of power right-wing leader Matteo Salvini, the presidential palace said.

Six days after President Sergio Mattarella tasked him with trying to form a new coalition, Conte reported back on Wednesday to say he succeeded.

Conte has told President Sergio Mattarella that he is in position to form a new government, which will be sworn in on Thursday, a presidential official said on Wednesday.

The swearing-in ceremony, involving the whole cabinet, will take place at the presidential palace at 0800 GMT, bringing to an end a month-long crisis.

Alliance despite bitter rivalry 

Roberto Gualtieri, an influential member of the European Parliament from the Democratic Party (PD), will be the economy minister in Italy's new government, Conte said on Wednesday.

Luigi Di Maio, leader of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, will be foreign minister, while the Interior Ministry will go to Luciana Lamorgese, a career civil servant with no political affiliation.

Conte's first 14-month-old government collapsed last month when Salvini yanked his anti-migrant League party out of the populist coalition in a foiled bid to trigger early elections so he could gain the premiership himself.

Despite the bitter rivalry, the centre-left Democratic Party has agreed to govern with the populist Five Star Movement, which again will be a senior partner.

The coalition must win mandatory confidence votes in the legislature's two chambers. Together, the Democrats, Five Stars and a tiny left-wing party should muster a slim majority.

Source: AP