Berlusconi rules out coalition with Monti
Ex-premier calls outgoing successor 'flash in the pan'30 January, 19:13
He said a deal was possible not only with the centre-left Democratic Party (PD), currently ahead in the polls, but also with the centre-right PdL.
But any "collaboration" with the centre right, he said, would have to come after it has got rid of the cork that blocks reforms".
The outgoing premier, who presents himself as an alternative to left and right, has in the past said similar things about the centre left, asking it to drop an alliance with the leftwing and allegedly anti-reform SEL party.
Berlusconi, for his part, said employers' association Confindustria was "disappointed" by Monti's platform because it would allegedly continue an austerity drive that has pushed Italy into recession, and claimed he had the Catholic vote sewn up.