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More Europe is the answer to the global crisis says Letta

Italian premier says leaders up to challenge in Mexico speech

14 January, 20:06
More Europe is the answer to the global crisis says Letta (ANSA) - Mexico City, January 14 - Italian Premier Enrico Letta on Tuesday said strengthening the European Union is the only way out of the global economic crisis.

Speaking on a State visit to Mexico, where he was accompanied by Italian industrialists, Letta decried the rising tide of populist anti-EU sentiment, which blames EU technocrats for the crisis as well as the austerity measures prescribed to remedy it.

"It's easy to blame Europe, but I say Europe is the solution," Letta told attendees at a Mexican foreign ministry conference. "If we had had a stronger Europe four years ago we would have dealt with the financial crisis much better. We need political leaders capable of facing up to public opinion and telling it we need more Europe, because this is the only way we can face the global crisis," the premier said.

His comments came as the EU gears up for European parliament elections in May, when analysts estimate nationalist, extreme right-wing, and other euro-skeptical parties are likely to gain ground.