The Latest: Democrat Gualtieri new Italian economy minister

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FILE – In this Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019 file photo, Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte, right, is flanked by Deputy-Premier Matteo Salvini as he addresses the Senate in Rome. Italy’s populist 5-Star Movement has asked, Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019, the nation’s president to give caretaker Premier Giuseppe Conte the mandate to form a new coalition government, a week after the one he led for 14 months collapsed. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)

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ROME (AP) — The Latest on Italian government politics (all times local):

4:25 p.m.

Roberto Gualtieri, 53, a Democrat who now chairs the European Parliament’s economic affairs commission has been named Italy’s new economy minister, as Premier Giuseppe Conte unveiled his new Cabinet.

Gualtieri will have the hard task of drafting a painful budget law that needs to be approved by the end of the year and avert a massive VAT hike that could hurt Italy’s fragile economy.

At the key Interior ministry, Conte choose migration expert Luciana Lamorgese, 65, former Milan prefect.

She is expected to reshape migration policies after her predecessor, League’s leader Matteo Salvini, imposed his hard-line stance.

Italy’s president signed off the new Cabinet on Wednesday after the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the center-left Democrats forged an uneasy government coalition expected to improve ties with European Union’s partners and adopt a softer migration stance.


3:40 p.m.

The Italian presidential palace says Premier Giuseppe Conte has formed a new government, a coalition of the populist 5-Star Movement and left-leaning Democrats that shuts out of power right-wing leader Matteo Salvini.

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

His 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.


12:55 p.m.

Political leaders say they’ve put the final touches on Italy’s next government, which will shut out right-wing firebrand Matteo Salvini and his anti-migrant League.

Premier-designate Giuseppe Conte is expected to report back soon to Italy’s president, possibly later Wednesday, with a Cabinet list for what would be his second government.

Salvini toppled Conte’s previous, populist coalition by yanking his party’s coalition support last month, hoping to force an election and become premier himself.

But, despite bitter rivalry, the center-left Democratic Party has agreed to govern with the populist 5-Star Movement, which again will be senior partner.

The coalition must win mandatory confidence votes in the legislature’s two chambers. Together, the Democrats, 5-Stars and a tiny left-wing party should muster a slim majority.

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